Mon | Feb 19, 2018

Cut fuel taxes

Published:Wednesday | January 13, 2016 | 12:00 AM


Good governance dictates that the Jamaican Government act with alacrity to put in place three basic measures to help alleviate the burden and speculation over contaminated gasolene.

First, the source of the contamination must be detected in short order. The public must then be assured that the dissemination of petrol from this source, even if not named, is stopped as soon as it is detected.

Second, the Government has tested a series of petrol stations that it refuses to identify. While I understand this position, I must, therefore, suggest that the testing be multiplied to adequate sample stations. Then, instead of naming the bad ones, name an acceptable portion of uncontaminated ones across Jamaica at particular times so that the public could feel at ease to purchase from these stations.

Finally, with the significant fall in the international price of oil, it is only prudent that the owner and operator of Petrojam also reduce the petrol price in Jamaica.

Moreover, with this ongoing problem of contaminated petrol, the Government should not wait for the public to demand a reduction or protest the lack thereof. To make this reduction in price reasonable and positively felt by the public, the Government should reduce the high tax Jamaicans pay on petroleum products - at least for a period.

Even with an imminent election in 2016, it will not be seen as a strategic political plot to reduce income at the pumps in order to gain at the poll until the permanent fix is found.