Saudi Arabia has issued a statement saying it wants to “make everything free” and that it would not want to pay for a person’s “goods or services”.
Saudi Arabia, which has the world’s largest oil reserves, has long been criticised for the high prices it charges for its products and services.
Last year, it launched a national “national initiative” to price everything, and has recently announced plans to do the same for the oil industry.
Saudi Arabia has long used its power over oil prices to pressure the international oil industry and set a high price on fuel imports.
“This national initiative is aimed at making everything free for the people and is not about paying for things,” the statement from the ministry of oil and gas said.
The ministry has announced it will set up a special commission to monitor the implementation of the new plan, and a new “market commission” will be set up to regulate oil market prices.
The price of petrol will increase from 8.9 million riyals ($2.1) per litre to 9.4 million riya ($4.9), the ministry said.
It added that the government would also impose a tax on the purchase of goods that are made from imported materials.
In recent years, the kingdom has imposed a number of tax policies aimed at curbing its huge oil revenues, but analysts say the latest move could be aimed at encouraging domestic consumers to use less petrol.
“The new price will be much higher than the current prices, so there is a lot of pressure from consumers,” said Ibrahim al-Hussein, head of the Middle East and North Africa business at oil-services provider IHS.
“But it’s hard to say exactly what the new price might be.
What we do know is that the [government] will introduce a special price of 9.5-10 times the current market price.”
The announcement comes as Saudi Arabia is trying to shore up its finances following a series of oil price cuts.
It announced a new tax of 1.2 billion riyal ($7.4) on petrol purchases last month, but the price of crude oil was also cut from 9.7 million rial ($30) to 9 million rials ($15) after a previous cut in December.
The oil ministry has said that it will not increase the price for petrol for two months, and that the country is also exploring the possibility of lowering the price on a monthly basis.
The kingdom has also slashed the price from 4.5 million ria ($70) per barrel to 4 million rium ($58) a barrel, although analysts say that the lower price may not be sufficient to offset the impact of falling oil prices.
In a separate development on Wednesday, the government will introduce new rules to tax the buying of luxury goods, including jewellery, car sales, electronics and fashion.
The new tax will apply to goods such as watches, shoes, clothes and accessories.
Saudi authorities have also started to restrict the number of people allowed to buy alcohol and tobacco.
The move follows the government’s decision last year to ban people from buying alcohol, cigarettes and tobacco in public places and to close shops selling them.