PETROL prices in the Balearic Islands have now reached the highest rates in history, and will continue increasing whilst oil continues to rise, much to the dismay of local businesses and drivers. Oil prices are now above 56 dollars per barrel and this is increasing petrol prices on the island, according to the Balearic Association of Petrol Stations. The lowest fuel prices for unleaded petrol (95), the most used by drivers, found at the island's petrol stations yesterday, almost reached one euro per litre (0'975 euros), according to the Ministry for the Economy and Taxation. Diesel fuel, which is only used by 50 percent of drivers but more than 80 percent of commercial vehicles, topped the 0'9 euros mark yesterday at 0'909 euros per litre. It is no longer profitable to drive diesel vehicles, said Jesus Salas, head of the Petrol Stations Association, which groups together 220 petrol stations, marinas and petrol pump installations in the Balearics. During the last increase to the oil rates in October 2004, the Brent price for a barrel of oil rose to 50 dollars.
This in turn raised the prices of unleaded petrol to cost on average 0'927 euros per litre and diesel to cost 0'834 euros per litre.
Salas said that the one centime increase yesterday will force the majority of Balearic petrol stations to increase prices as from tomorrow.
As well as these increases hitting the pockets of the average driver, it will also play havoc to many businesses and sectors of the economy on the islands. Transport companies, airlines and the agricultural sector will suffer from these increases, as well as many more businesses who daily rely on petrol.
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