How Much Is A Litre Of Paraffin In South Africa

How Much Is A Litre Of Paraffin In South Africa

In South Africa, paraffin is the most common fuel used for cooking, heating and lighting in many households, particularly in rural and informal settlements. It is affordable and easily accessible, making it a go-to option for those who cannot afford electricity or gas.

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Table
  1. What is paraffin?
  2. Why is the price of paraffin important?
  3. How much does a litre of paraffin cost in South Africa?
    1. Factors that Influence the Price of Paraffin in South Africa
    2. The Benefits of Using Paraffin
    3. The Disadvantages of Using Paraffin
  4. Conclusion

What is paraffin?

Paraffin, also known as kerosene, is a combustible hydrocarbon liquid derived from petroleum. It is often used as a fuel for lamps, heaters, and stoves due to its high energy content and affordability.

Why is the price of paraffin important?

The price of paraffin has a significant impact on the lives of many South Africans, particularly those living in poverty. As it is often used for cooking and heating, an increase in the price of paraffin can lead to an increase in the cost of living for many households.

How much does a litre of paraffin cost in South Africa?

The price of paraffin in South Africa can vary depending on several factors, including location, time of year, and global oil prices. As of August 2021, a litre of paraffin costs around R14.96 in Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal Provinces, while it costs slightly more in other provinces such as the Western Cape where it is sold for about R15.90 per litre.

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Factors that Influence the Price of Paraffin in South Africa

The cost of paraffin in South Africa is influenced by several factors, including:

  • Global oil prices: As paraffin is derived from petroleum, fluctuations in the global oil market can impact its price.
  • Exchange rates: The exchange rate between the South African Rand and other currencies can affect the price of imported paraffin.
  • Taxes: The price of paraffin includes taxes such as the fuel levy and Road Accident Fund levy.
  • Distribution costs: The cost of transporting and distributing paraffin to retail outlets can impact its price.
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The Benefits of Using Paraffin

Despite its negative impact on the environment, paraffin has several benefits for households in South Africa:

  • Affordable: Paraffin is cheaper than other energy sources such as electricity and gas.
  • Accessible: Paraffin is readily available in most retail outlets across the country.
  • Multi-use: Paraffin can be used for cooking, heating, and lighting.

The Disadvantages of Using Paraffin

While paraffin has benefits, it also has some disadvantages:

  • Dangerous: Paraffin is highly flammable and may cause fires or explosions if not used safely.
  • Polluting: Paraffin releases harmful pollutants such as carbon monoxide and particulate matter, which can exacerbate respiratory illnesses.
  • Inefficient: Paraffin stoves and heaters are often less efficient than other energy sources, leading to higher fuel consumption and costs.

Conclusion

Paraffin is an affordable and accessible fuel source for many households in South Africa. However, its price can vary depending on several factors such as global oil prices, exchange rates, taxes, and distribution costs. While paraffin has benefits, it is also dangerous, polluting and inefficient, posing risks to both human health and the environment.

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