During the last month, taps in Metropolitan Lima and Callao they have maintained a profit margin on the sale of fuels of more than S/2.00 despite the fact that, at the wholesale level, these have fallen.
The Republic confirmed, for example, that gasohol at 90 was reduced by S/2.55 from July 7 to August 5 at the Petroperú plant in Callao, going from S/22.94 to S/20, 38 a gallon (see infographic).
However, in that same period, the average price of sale to the public barely contracted S/1.06, standing in the first week of August at S/21.67 per gallon, according to data from Osinergmin. Therefore, service stations maintain a benefit of S/ 1.28 per gallon.
And, as for 95 gasohol —the one with the highest demand along with diesel, although the latter is subsidized by the Price Stabilization Fund (FEPC)—, despite the fact that in the wholesale segment it was reduced from S/24.69 to S/21.50 per gallon; the taps only lowered their price by S/1.18, and offer it to the public at S/24.29, thus taking S/2.78 more for each gallon sold.
On the other hand, it is necessary to highlight that the reference prices of most fuels have fallen for the eighth consecutive week to 5.17%, recalls the Peruvian Agency for Consumers and Users (Opecu).
Why do prices take time to fall?
The former president of Perupetro Aurelio Ochoa Alencastre emphasizes that despite the free market that governs our country, “price debauchery” persists and where the profit margins of the companies that sell fuels can reach peaks of 20%.
“It is true that taps have bought at higher prices, but stocks are not the same for everyone. Some have to renew after a few days, but in front of them they have another faucet that renews in a week, that is, they copy their prices to justify not losing. But how do you do when it’s the other way around? There they do not hurry to transfer the reduction, as the refineries do. That is one of the distortions, they always try to drag out the time to fleece the market”, he explained.
On the other hand, the former director of the General Directorate of Hydrocarbons (DGH) Erick García specifies that the discount to the consumer will depend on the stocks that the taps may have, whose rotation can range between two or six days; however, there is not enough regulation to encourage competition based on the transparency of data such as stock, daily sales and purchases, among others, which must be executed by Osinergmin.
To this we must add the commercial margins; that is, when the faucets raise their prices so as not to be left out of the equation in a highly speculative market like ours. “It is a reality that is demonized in the taps,” he concluded.
Margin. According to Osinergmin, at the national level, 1 million 108,669 gallons of gasohol of 90 per day are purchased. While 95 gasohol is 497,906 gallons. Gasoholes in general occupy 20.25% of the demand.