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Sgt. 1st Class James Oliver, HHC 175th Finance Company, pumps gas into his vehicle at the AAFES service station on Yongsan Garrison.

Sgt. 1st Class James Oliver, HHC 175th Finance Company, pumps gas into his vehicle at the AAFES service station on Yongsan Garrison. (Greg L. Davis / S&S)

Gas prices on U.S. military installations in South Korea are up about 8 percent this month, or about 13 cents per gallon, for motorists using Army and Air Force Exchange Service pumps.

The increases come as AAFES makes its monthly adjustment of prices to bring them in line with the average gas price in the United States.

Unleaded in Korea is up about 14 cents, from $1.50 in February to $1.64 in March, a 9.3 percent increase. Premium is up about 13 cents, from $1.69 to $1.82, a 7. 7 percent increase. And diesel is up 13 cents, from $1.54 to $1.67, an 8.44 percent increase.

In Seoul, unleaded fuel is about $4.50 a gallon, diesel is about $2.76 a gallon and kerosene is about $2.27 a gallon.

The new prices took effect March 1, said Air Force Master Sgt. Howard Smith, an AAFES spokesman.

AAFES sets its prices based on the Department of Energy’s four-week average for stateside gasoline sales in the previous month, Smith said. AAFES raises or lowers its prices to bring them in line with the DOE’s average, and to defray operating and delivery costs.

“The Department of Energy releases its monthly average for each grade of gasoline and then AAFES takes that average and then we add any incremental dispensing costs in our overseas market,” Smith said. “Those are the costs that AAFES incurs selling the fuel.”

The DOE’s averages for February were: unleaded, $1.585; premium, $1.771, and diesel, $1.622.

Gas prices in Korea rose about 5 percent, or 7 cents per gallon, in February.

However, the increases of March and February were in contrast to January, when AAFES’ Korea prices actually dipped almost 3 percent from December.

“It’s all supply and demand,” said Sgt. Mike Kile while filling up his tank at Yongsan Garrison on Wednesday. “The higher prices are not going to hurt me. I have a little three-cylinder car. I may spend two or three more dollars a month.”

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