September 18, 2019 / 8:25 PM / a month ago

Argentina raises fuel prices after Saudi oil attack

BUENOS AIRES, Sept 18 (Reuters) - Argentina said it would increase fuel prices by 4% on Wednesday to account for volatility in the international oil market after weekend attacks on Saudi Arabia’s oil infrastructure.

The announcement on Wednesday by the Energy Secretariat also said the government would raise the price per barrel of oil by 5.58%.

The announcement comes as a modification to the 90-day fuel price freeze announced by President Mauricio Macri in August in an effort to protect hard-hit consumers after the peso currency plunged sharply following his primary election defeat to opposition candidate Alberto Fernandez.

The government attributed its decision to the sharp spike in Brent after Saturday’s attacks on Saudi Arabia’s oil effectively shut 5% of global oil output, and boosted prices by about 15% on Monday.

“These events lead to an unforeseen and significant situation of price increases that inevitably impact the production, marketing and normal supply of fuels in our country,” Argentina’s Energy Secretariat said.

An official bulletin on Monday stated that Argentina will offer oil companies and oil-producing provinces a subsidy of 116.10 pesos, about $2.05 on Wednesday, applied to each barrel of oil delivered to the market in the month of September.

Reporting by Eliana Raszewski and Cassandra Garrison Editing by Alistair Bell

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