Krzysztof Romaniuk, the Director of Fuel Market Analysis at the Polish Organization of Oil Industry and Trade, shared insights into the potential trajectory of fuel prices in 2024. In a conversation with the Polish Press Agency, assessing current macroeconomic indicators influencing fuel prices, Romaniuk expressed confidence in the absence of immediate concerns regarding significant price hikes. However, he emphasized that much depends on the conditions of the world’s largest economies.
Despite the increasing electrification of vehicle fleets, Romaniuk believes that the significance of petroleum fuels in the Polish economy will continue to grow in the coming years. He anticipates sustained high demand for approximately 3-4 more years, attributing it to the “planned economic growth using funds from the National Reconstruction Plan (KPO),” which could stimulate investments and, consequently, fuel demand.
When asked about the potential fuel prices in 2024, Romaniuk pointed out that “fuel market margins in Poland have been among the lowest in the entire EU for years.” In 2023, the average annual prices for basic types of motor fuels in Poland were lower than the previous year, despite numerous challenges in the fuel market.
Romaniuk acknowledged the stability of international markets and the strong value of the Polish currency, indicating that there are no immediate concerns about rapid price increases. However, he cautioned that the oil market can be highly dynamic at times.
The Director of the Polish Organization of Oil Industry and Trade highlighted a continuing trend in the fuel station market, with a concentration on major market operators. He identified a potential challenge in the planned embargo on Russian LPG in 2024.
For Polish companies dealing with this commodity, the embargo poses a significant challenge. Adjusting fuel supply routes to Poland has become necessary, and many companies have already started this process in anticipation of possible sanctions. Unfortunately, the logistics of LPG deliveries were previously geared towards purchases from the eastern border, and hence, substantial changes, including investments, are required to shift towards deliveries from sea routes and the western direction.
Romaniuk concluded by noting that Russian LPG purchases were cheaper than those from alternative sources. As a result, imposed sanctions will compel suppliers and, consequently, fuel station operators to increase prices for autogas. The evolving situation in the fuel market suggests that stakeholders must remain vigilant and adaptable to navigate potential fluctuations in the coming year.