As the price of petrol 95 surpassed €2/litre for the first time in the country's history on Tuesday, Belgium's FPS Economy has put out new stark warnings that the price of diesel could rise above €3 per litre in the summer.
Fuel prices are being pushed to new records due to the war in Ukraine and the rising demand for oil post-pandemic, and the situation could worsen in weeks to come, according to reports from La Dernière Heure. The starkest warnings are being made about the diesel market, with some saying the price of diesel could cost €3 per litre by the end of the summer.
"The main problem is the refining capacity of diesel. Without going into too much technical detail, it takes a lot more time and a certain type of oil to produce enough diesel," Damien Ernst, an energy specialist and professor at the University of Liège, told the daily.
He explained that if the EU decides in the coming weeks to impose an embargo on all Russian oil p roducts as part of sanctions against the country, "we will have a big problem."
"Because, for the moment, the United States is compensating for the Russian losses, but with shale oil. But this is precisely an oil with which it is difficult to obtain diesel at the molecular level. Moreover, stocks are not infinite," he said.
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According to Ernst, the price for diesel will surpass the €3 mark if supply continues to fall in relation to demand, and he added the cost of petrol will follow suit. "In the end, it may even be €4 per litre at some point! In the United States, prices are already rising from week to week."
A drop in prices can be counted on if Russia withdraws from Ukraine, followed by a restoration of trade relations. And then, we can hope for a drop, but we should not count on a return to the prices we knew before the crisis."
On Tuesday, the price of petrol 95 climbed to €2.025 per litre, while petrol 98 (E5) now costs €2.20 per litre at pumps in the country, €0.16 more expensive. The maximum price of diesel currently stands at €2,0180 per litre.