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Chief Executive Officer of the National Petroleum Authority Hassan Tampuli says government does not have direct control over fuel pricing due to the country’s deregulation policy.
High prices of fuel at the various pumps have lately sparked controversies, as civil societies and consumers have mounted pressure on the government to intervene.
Reacting to calls from the New Democratic Congress (NDC) asking for a downward review of fuel prices, the NPA boss said petroleum pricing is beyond government’s mandate.
Explaining the situation, the regulator said, “Under the current price deregulation regime which has been in effect since July 2015, price volatility on the international market is expected to directly impact domestic pump prices because the government has no direct control over the setting of the bi-weekly prices of petroleum products”.
Tampuli also stated that although global petroleum prices have fallen, coupled with the cedi being stable, it is not possible to reduce fuel prices with immediate effect because the second pricing window is yet to begin.
“By the way, we have two pricing windows. First, starts from the 1st to the 15th of the months and the second pricing window is takes the other half of the month.
“It is such a wrong call for anyone to request that the government makes an immediate reduction. It does not work that way,” he noted.
He further expressed optimism that prices of petroleum products will go down in the second pricing window in March.
“It is not for the NDC or any other authority to dictate to us what the prices should be. Industry people understand that once there is a reduction in global market prices, the currency being stable and no new taxes introduced, prices definitely will come down. We are likely to see a 15 percent reduction, in fuel prices”.
The CEO of the NPA believes that calls for immediate price lowering are misplaced.
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