China is set to slash retail fuel prices for the third consecutive month, which could boost consumption at a time when the economy is flagging, The Wall Street Journal reported, citing state media. “We will cut refined-oil-product prices on Wednesday when it meets the price-adjustment window,” Zhou Wangjun, the deputy director of the pricing at the National Development and Reform Commission, said in statement on the NDRC website. Analysts predict the size of the cut to be as high as 6.6% for gasoline and 7.2% for diesel. The existing average retail ceiling benchmarks are RMB9,120 per metric ton for gasoline and RMB8,310 for diesel. Declining fuel prices come as part of a disinflationary trend emerging in the Chinese economy. Lower prices may make consumers more open to future energy pricing reforms directed by the NDRC.
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