Qatars Ministry of Energy and Industry will allow gasoline and diesel prices in the domestic market to fluctuate according to global market changes, as the gas-rich country looks to reduce the subsidy burden on its finances amid lower oil prices.
Fuel prices are subsidised, but from 1 May, forecourt prices will move in accordance with fluctuations in the world markets. The prices will be reviewed on a monthly basis, Qatars official news agency QNA cited Sheikh Mishaal bin Jabor al-Thani, head of the fuel prices committee, as saying at a press conference in Doha.
Future prices in Qatars domestic market will be based on a formula that includes global fuel prices, production and distribution costs within Qatar, and prices elsewhere in the region, QNA said.
The move by Qatar mimics the UAEs decision to have a floating price structure last year. The Gulf states, which account for about a third of the worlds proven oil reserves, are cutting spending and reviewing water, electricity and fuel subsidy structures after crude prices fell from more than $110 a barrel in mid-2014.
The other members of the GCC, including Saudi Arabia, Kuwait and Oman, have also reduced various state subsidies.