THE retail price of the 93 grade of petrol will drop by 13c a litre from next Wednesday, the Department of Energy said on Thursday. The 95 grade of petrol will fall by 15c/l, giving motorists some relief in the new year.

A litre of the 95 grade of petrol will cost R11.86 in Gauteng from January 2, and R11.51 at the coast.

The recently announced petrol prices for January follow a 9c/l drop this month.

Diesel with 0.05% sulphur will fall by 27.58c/l, while the diesel with 0.005% sulphur will fall by 28.58c/l.

Illuminating paraffin (wholesale) will drop by 17c/l and there will be a 23c/l decrease in the single maximum national retail price for illuminating paraffin.

The maximum retail price for liquefied petroleum gas will drop by 9c/kg.

The fuel decreases were boosted by the rand, which strengthened compared with the previous period when prices were determined.

The department reported that the average rand/dollar exchange rate for the period November 30 to December 26 was R8.68/$, compared with R8.83/$ during the previous period.

A firmer rand offsets the pressure of higher oil prices.