• Kyodo News


Gas stations nationwide hiked pump prices Tuesday after major distributors, including Nippon Oil Corp., raised wholesale prices in response to higher crude costs.

The hike widely affected drivers heading to resorts and hometowns during the Golden Week holiday season.

The distributors raised wholesale prices of gasoline for May shipments over those for April by about 5-6 yen per liter after a surge in crude prices in April.

The average retail price around Loop Road No. 7, also known as Kannana Dori, in Tokyo’s Setagaya Ward used to be about 125 yen per liter for regular gasoline and 135 yen for premium gasoline thanks to an intense price war in the area. But these retailers also raised prices by 5-6 yen on Tuesday.

Many of the gas stations already raised prices in April in anticipation of higher demand during the holiday season, an industry source said.

Driven up by the global crude upsurge, the average regular gasoline price broke the 143 yen mark last August, topping the previous record of 142 yen set during the Persian Gulf crisis of fall 1990.

After reaching the 144 yen level last September, the prices dipped below 130 yen in February before recovering to the 130 yen level in mid-April.

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