Gasoline Sales Hit Pre-Pandemic LevelsBy Antonio Trujillo | Thu, 10/07/2021 - 10:50
Gasoline sales in August reached pre-pandemic levels, signaling a healthy recovery of the sector and the economy at-large.
A 13.15 percent increase in gasoline sales occurred during the first week of August, according to data released by the Ministry of Energy. Historic lows were reached last year, particularly during the months of April and May, solely due to the pandemic measures of mobility restrictions imposed by the government in order to stop the spread of COVID-19. Over time, as states changed from red, orange and yellow lights to green lights, sales began to recovered as well.
In July and August, gasoline sales levels either followed suit and matched those of 2019, when reported figures were of over 794 thousand daily barrels, or reached higher numbers. For instance, in the last week of June 2019, a total of 772 thousand barrels of gasoline were consumed across the country. In that same week in 2021, a total of 800 thousand barrels worth of gasoline were commercialized.
According to data from the Ministry of Energy, small but promising signs of recovery in gasoline sales were reported during the 25th week of 2020, when levels were superior to those of April and May. Historic lows were observed in April above all months, when demand barely hit 429,000 barrels a day, primarily due to the never-before-seen mobility restrictions that rendered it impractical to keep a full tank and other various affectations to economic activities. By May, demand had a small increase and reached 541,000 barrels a day.
At some point during May and June last year, national demand for gasoline began to increase steadily, reaching a total of 706 thousand barrels by the 44th week of the year, the first of October. In fact, almost a year had passed since national demand had hit or exceeded the 800,000-barrel mark.
Furthermore, the last week of Nov. 2020 saw a pandemic-high of 782 thousand daily barrels, unheard of during the preceding months, and although by Oct. 2021 several states have already been in green light, such demand has not been reached, yet the outlook is promising, and the small improvements in sales observed during Aug. 2021 have shown that the industry and economy at-large is on the road of recovery.