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Higher gas prices, taxi fares in Costa Rica start Friday

August 27, 2015

A decree setting higher taxi fares and gas prices appeared Thursday in the official newspaper La Gaceta, meaning the hikes will take effect starting Friday.

The Public Services Regulatory Authority (ARESEP) approved a ₡15 hike in taxi fares that will apply both to the first kilometer and to each additional one. The basic fare will rise from ₡630 to ₡645 ($1.17 to $1.19), while all kilometers beyond the first will go from ₡610 to ₡625 ($1.13 to $1.16).

The agency also authorized a ₡20 increase in fares for special taxi service to and from Juan Santamaría International Airport.

The approved increase resulted from an evaluation ARESEP conducts every six months which takes into consideration variations in fuel prices, exchange rate, driver’s salaries and taxes.

Fuel hikes

The approved increase in fuel prices means a liter of Super gasoline will rise from ₡676 to ₡679 ($1.25 to $1.26), Plus gasoline from ₡639 to ₡642 ($1.18 to $1.19) and Diesel from ₡477 to ₡479 ($0.88 to $0.89).

The National Oil Refinery (RECOPE) had requested a higher increase but ARESEP rejected several of the expenses cited to justify the increase, saying they were not related to fuel costs. These included some ₡20,000 million ($37 million) for RECOPE employee benefits, scholarships for children of employees, and food services, among others.

Nevertheless, the new, higher prices could be short lived. On Thursday ARESEP reported that it is currently evaluating a decrease in fuel prices that, if approved, would lower per-liter prices by ₡43 for Super gasoline, ₡39 for Plus gasoline and ₡28 for Diesel.

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