HARARE, June 16 (The Source) – The Zimbabwe government has with immediate effect raised the threshold for the mandatory blending of fuel with ethanol from 10 to 15 percent.
Zimbabwe made the blending compulsory in 2013 ,starting off at five percent and later to 10 percent in a bid to cut the country’s fuel import bill. Treasury figures show that the country spent $293 million on fuel imports in the first quarter.
“It is hereby notified that in terms of section 4(1) of the Petroleum Regulations,2013………the Minister approves the current level of mandatory blending to 15 per centum,” the Minister of Energy Samuel Undenge said in a notice in the government gazette on Friday.
“The consequence of this approval is that all licensed operators, shall from the date of publication of this notice, be mandated to sell unleaded blended at E15”.
Greenfuel, a joint venture between government’s Agricultural and Rural Development Authority (Arda) and businessman, Billy Rautenbach’s Macdom and Rating Investments, together with Hippo Valley’s Triangle estates are the country’s only producers of Ethanol.
Fuel in Zimbabwe has however remained expensive despite the blending. The price of litre of petrol ranges between $1,37 and $1,46 per litre while diesel costs between $1,26 and $1,36 per litre, far much more than the regional average in other landlocked countries.