Jordanians’ consumption of oil derivatives in 2012 increased by 6.5 per cent compared with the previous year despite an increase in fuel prices,  according to the Gas Stations Owners Association (GSOA).
Consumption of oil derivatives in 2012 amounted to 3.19 billion litres, compared with 2.99 billion litres in 2011, according to GSOA figures made available to The Jordan Times, which also revealed that consumption of both octane-90 and octane-95 petrol rose by 5.5 per cent.
GSOA Director Ahmad Hattab noted that although gasoline prices shot up in 2012, the high number of foreigners and the growing economy led to an increase in fuel consumption.
In 2011, car fuel consumption stood at 1.416 billion litres, rising to 1.494 billion litres in 2012.
In November last year, the government lifted fuel subsidies, with the decision leading to a 15 per cent increase in the price of 90-octane gasoline and a 33 per cent increase in prices of diesel and kerosene .
Currently, fuel prices are changed on a monthly basis in accordance with changes on the international market.
GSOA President Fahed Al Fayez noted that fuel prices increased in the final months of 2012, which did not affect the growth of total consumption.
But Fayez said the rise might affect consumption this year, with people turning to other alternatives.
“After the prices of octane-95 fuel jumped, 90 per cent of motorists switched to using octane-90, which almost quadrupled its consumption,” the GSOA president said.
Meanwhile, kerosene consumption increased by eight million litres in 2012, amounting to 99 million litres, while 1.6 billion litres of diesel were consumed last year, compared with 1.49 billion litres in 2011.
Jordanians bought 28 million gas cylinders in 2012 , a slight increase from 27.5 million the previous year, which the GSOA attributed to consumers’ switch to other alternatives, such as electric ovens and heaters.
The price of a gas cylinder rose by 54 per cent, from JD6.5 to JD10, after the government lifted fuel subsidies last November.
The country’s energy bill between January and November last year was JD4.41 billion, 24.1 per cent higher than the same period in 2011, when it stood at JD3.55 billion, according to the Department of Statistics figures on foreign trade.