China will announce a surprise increase of about 18 percent increase in retail gasoline and diesel prices effective from Friday, the first increase in eight months, two industry sources told Reuters.
"Yes it's real. They are going to raise the prices. We were told to wait in the office to receive the official notice," said a fuel sales official with top refiner Sinopec.
The sources said gasoline and diesel prices will rise by 1,000 yuan ($145.5) per tonne. China last raised pump fuel prices in November.
The move in November took many market watchers by surprise as Beijing has repeatedly vowed to rule out "near-term" price increases to fight decade-high inflation.
Oil prices fell $3 a barrel on Thursday on the news because demand from China has been one of the main factors driving oil prices to a record near $140.