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Buying petrol in February 2008

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The price of gas has already reached 100 dollars (70 euros) per Brent barrel. But inflation figures in Europe are getting out of control. The situation in each EU country

Gas prices in Europe have been soaring due to an increase in the world's demand paired with the limited supply and global resources and a complicated geopolitical situation in some oil rich regions. In addition, gasoline is heavily taxed in most European nations. The variations of prices of gasoline around Europe reflect, among others, the differences in the rate of taxation. Italy, for example decided on 20 February to reduce taxes on oil so that consumers could stand the situation.

The pressures in demand for oil, however, do not mean gasoline is expensive everywhere around the world. Most oil exporting nations still enjoy extremely low gas prices guaranteed by the government. For example, a litre of gas in Saudi Arabia costs 0,12 euros!

The prices in the map below refer to Super 95 octane gasoline, available to customers around Europe. In some cases, they are approximations, as gasoline prices vary greatly on the regional level.

Click on the icons to find out the price of fuel in each country for one litre

Inflation out of control

On 29 February Eurostat is publishing inflation figures in the EU for January 2008. Finance commissioner Joaquín Almunia has announced they'll be higher than expected. According to preliminary figures given to national central banks, Eurostat sees an increasing of inflation in the Eurozone until 3.2%. The French situation is the most worrying, because it will reach 3.6%, a figure unknown since 1992. This has pushed the French government to launch an investigation to probe who is taking advantage of those high prices in front of the consumers, in a country where growth is still timid (1.8% expected GDP in 2008).