Here are the big price hikes you can expect this month

April is known for being the month of price hikes in South Africa, as the government ushers in a new financial year – and a host of tax changes with it – while companies like DStv and Eskom also implement their price adjustments around the same time.

While South Africans have been left battered by a year of Covid-19 and the lockdowns that have come with it, these hikes are largely unavoidable and will need to be taken on the chin.

BusinessTech looked at some of the most notable increases below and how they will impact your finances.


Fuel prices

Motorists need to gear themselves for record-high fuel prices, when the official adjustments are made in the next week (Wednesday, 7 April).

Month-end data from the Central Energy Fund points to a massive increase of 73 cents a litre for petrol, an increase of 39 cents for diesel, and an increase of 37 cents for illuminating paraffin.

This is before additional taxes are added, however, which will see a combined 27 cents per litre added for the general fuel levy and Road Accident Fund levy, all coming into effect this month.

According to the AA, this will push the total increase to around R1 per litre for petrol – pushing prices up to record highs of about R17.32 a litre.

Higher fuel prices will elevate costs all along the value chain and could see shelf prices for goods and service costs also increase as a result.


Electricity

A High Court ruling in 2020 gave power utility Eskom permission to raise additional revenue through tariff hikes over three years.

The energy regulator, Nersa, managed to negotiate this level down to R10 billion in the current year, translating to a 15.6% increase in prices as of 1 April.

The court order stated that an amount of 5.44c/kWh will be added to the average standard tariff for Eskom customers in the 2021/22 tariff year making the aggregate standard tariff for Eskom customers in the 2021/22 tariff year 134.30c/kWh.

These price hikes are already filtering through to end-users in different municipalities, as seen with recent price adjustment notifications from areas like the City of Joburg.


Alcohol and cigarettes

As part of National Treasury’s 2021 budget, it was announced that sin taxes would be increasing in the new financial year. This is through an 8% increase in alcohol and tobacco excise duties.

For those who enjoy an alcoholic beverage, the following price increases apply:

  • 340ml can of beer or cider will cost an extra 14 cents;
  • 750ml bottle of wine will cost an extra 26 cents;
  • 750ml bottle of sparkling wine will cost an extra 86 cents;
  • 750ml bottle of spirits (whisky, gin, vodka, etc) will cost an extra R5.50.

Tobacco products will also increase in price.

  • A packet of 20 cigarettes will cost an extra R1.39;
  • 25 grams of piped tobacco will cost an extra 47 cents;
  • A 23 gram cigar will cost an extra R7.71.

DStv

If you subscribe to pay-TV group, Multichoice, price increases for its DStv packages come into effect from 1 April.

The group’s Premium package has seen a marginal increase of R10, taking it to R829 per month.

Similar R10 price increases are being introduced for the DStv Compact and DStv Compact Plus packages, with DStv Family seeing a R16 increase.

The price to rent a BoxOffice movie will increase to R40, up from the previous R35. The Access Fee has also increased by R5 to an amount of R105.

Package 2020 2021 Change
DStv Premium R819 R829 +1.2%
DStv Compact Plus R529 R539 +1.9%
DStv Compact R399 R409 +2.5%
DStv Family R279 R295 +5.7%
DStv Access R110 R115 +4.5%
Add-ons 2020 2021 Change
Access Fee R100 R105 +5.0%

Read: Food prices in South Africa are up in recent months – here’s what you are paying more for

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Here are the big price hikes you can expect this month