Increasing fuel prices in the Cayman Islands may have “plateaued” in mid-to-late June and could head down later in the summer, according to the islands’ utilities and commodities regulator.
Cayman has seen an average overall increase in prices at the pump of between 30 and 35 cents a gallon since late March, weekly price statistics compiled by OfReg show.
“Prices locally began to respond to the upswing in global refined prices during April 2018 and have continued on the upward trend through to June, when we observed prices [began] to stabilize and plateaued since mid-June with the exception of Cayman Brac,” a statement released by OfReg this week noted.
In late March, average fuel prices were around $4.43 per gallon. By June 19, the average among the Rubis and Sol stations on Grand Cayman for the lowest priced unleaded fuel was up to $4.74 per gallon. Those average prices do not include fuel sold in Cayman Brac and Little Cayman, which are typically much higher.
They also do not include fuel prices at new market competitor Refuel, which is operating in George Town and where prices are lower.
Refuel prices were $4.34 per gallon for 87 octane fuel and $4.48 per gallon for 90 octane as of July 24, according to OfReg. Most Rubis and Sol stations sell 89 octane and 93 octane petrol.
The petrol figures for the two large distributors were hit with an average 13-cents per gallon price increase between June 5 and June 19, according to the regulator.
Most Esso stations saw a 15-cent per gallon price increase during the two weeks, and most Rubis stations experienced between a 10-cent and 15-cent per gallon increase.
Duke Munroe, the director of fuels for OfReg, noted there may be some hope for lower gas prices later this summer in Cayman.
“Prices in Cayman generally follow regional and global refined products price trends, and the observed reduction in the rate of increase of refined prices shows promise for local prices during the rest of summer,” Mr. Munroe said. “However, to keep this issue in perspective, OfReg’s real efforts and focus is on the local supply chain and its associated costs which determine prices at the pump, because we have no influence on global prices.”
Mr. Munroe said the topic of fuel prices is being monitored closely by elected Cabinet members. OfReg is now involved in creating a comprehensive market analysis and assessment to determine if there is true competition for petrol providers in Cayman.