Why is gasoline so expensive?

The liter of gasoline exceeded R$7! Find out what is the composition of the price of a liter of gasoline and understand the impacts of successive increases in the lives of those who own (or do not) have a car. 

Por Me Poupe!


One more update of the average price of gasoline in the country – a weekly survey by the ANP, the National Agency for Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels – and that feeling that it seems that the car’s tank is leaking becomes stronger, as the money reserved to refuel no longer fill the tank, it’s been a while!

Last week (August 15th to 21st), the average price of gasoline in Brazil was R$5.955 per liter, and the maximum value found in the Rio Grande do Sul was an impressive R$7.189!

Gasoline that arrives at refineries, by Petrobras, had more than 10 increases in 2021 and the price had rises that already reach 51%. According to the IBGE, the fuel had an accumulated increase of 27.5% this year; and in the last 12 months, prices have risen 37%. The *% of the bun#@ is dropping, right?


#PRATODOSVEREM: Nathalia Arcuri with an angry face, biting the handle of her wooden spoon, while the camera shakes with red reflections to give the impression of anger


Who pays this bill?

It is at these times that those who have never thought of selling their car start to get that pastel face, feeling between the cross and the pot, right?! Here I even give some tips to help you assess the best way out: keep the car, take the bike out of storage, use public transport, rent a vehicle or use taxi and mobility apps?

“Save me! do you know that nothing changes for me? I don’t have a car, I always thought it was too expensive and I also don’t like driving with the infernal traffic of cities!”

Well, you are quite right about that! But what if I tell you that not to fry their eggs, everyone ends up paying some of that bill? Soon I’ll explain! Before, I’ll show you why, after all, gasoline is so expensive.


#FOREVERYONEWATCH: Nathalia Arcuri is sitting on a couch with a white and black striped blanket. In the background, white and black adhesive elements refer to the financial universe. With his hands raised, Nath says “PAY ATTENTION”


There is an imposter among us: the dollar (but he is not alone)

I’ll start by bringing up one (perhaps the biggest) truth: the rise in gasoline has been driven by the devalued real against the dollar, due to the uncertainty of foreign investors regarding the Brazilian government’s economic policy, not to mention the institutional, political and social crises.

The more valued the dollar, the more expensive gasoline is, as the value of oil is pegged to the dollar. Another thing that impacts is the price of oil on the foreign market: with the pandemic alleviating and the world economy starting to turn around again, the increase in the search for oil (which is a commodity) pushes the price up there.


PARA TODOS VEREM: Nathalia Arcuri touching her head, looking like “you understand?”


And Petrobras, huh?

The explanation for this movement is due to Petrobras’ fuel price policy, which was changed to follow the Import Price Parity (PPI) policy. In other words, fuel sales prices follow the value of oil in the world and the exchange rate variation.


But who sets the price of gasoline?

The price of gasoline varies from state to state, city to city, station to station, and even overnight! Some variables cause these differences in value and define its price. In addition to the explanation I gave above – the dollar, oil, and Petrobras – knowing the composition of the price per liter will help to better understand what is happening. Pay attention!



Composition of the price of a liter of gasoline

As I explained above, the biggest slice of this cake belongs to Petrobras: 33.6%.

Then comes the infamous taxes, which are nothing new for anyone, as even the percentages have been practiced for some years.

The ICMS (Tax on Circulation of Goods and Services), which is a state tax (with rates that vary up to 30% between Brazilian states) has a 27.6% weight on the value of the pumps. This explains why gasoline prices are different from one city to another, but it does not justify the excessive increases in recent times.

Next are the cost of anhydrous ethanol (used in gasoline composition): 16.9% of the price; plus taxes – CIDE, PIS/PASEP, and COFINS: 11.5%; and distribution and sales costs: 10.4 .



So, in short

Basically, what makes the price of gasoline increase week by week is the lack of an effective strategy to attract investments and bring money from abroad to Brazil, appreciate the real, reduce the exchange rate, ease the price of oil and, consequently, lower the gasoline at the pumps.


Everyone pays the bill!

Answering the question – who pays the bill? -: all! Even those who don’t have a car are likely to use cars from mobility apps and even the traditional taxi.

Well then: with the successive increases in the price of gasoline, drivers are seeing their profit margins being directly impacted, compromising the operation (some give up racing, reducing the supply of available cars) and making racing more expensive.

Here we have separated, in a very easy and fun way, what you can do to spend less with these insistent gas rises.




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