It will not be a great start to the New Year for consumers as the petrol price went up at midnight last night.

The Energy Department announced that the price of petrol was to increase by 39 cents.

Both grades of diesel would go up by 32c, while the price of illuminating paraffin would increase by between 39 and 52c/l.

The maximum retail price for LP gas would go up 56c/kg.

Explaining the increase, the department said the average international prices of petrol, diesel and illuminating paraffin increased during the period under review, November 29 to December 26.

The average rand/US dollar exchange rate weakened to 10.3581 compared to 10.2121 during the previous period.

Some economists have warned of further petrol price increases in early 2014.