Change in Import Duties and prices for fuel products
Written by Administrator
Thursday, 25 February 2016 00:00
Belmopan. February 24, 2016.
Yesterday, the Ministry of Finance apprised the Cabinet of the continued, significant decrease in domestic crude oil production and the attendant slump in tax revenues and royalties, and made recommendations for immediate compensatory adjustments to the duties levied upon imported fuel products.
Consequently, Cabinet approved the following adjustments, effective February 25, 2016, to the import duties:
Increase of 40 cents per US Gallon on Premium Gasoline to $3.36 per US Gallon
Increase of 30 cents per US Gallon on Regular Gasoline to $3.03 per US Gallon
Increase of 80 cents per US Gallon on Diesel Oil to $2.72 per US Gallon
The combined effect of this change, along with the downward change in the CIF prices of this recent fuel shipment, will result in new pump prices per US gallon (in Belize City) as follows:
Premium Gasoline -$8.99 per US gallon
Regular Gasoline - $7.98 per US gallon
Diesel Oil - $7.52 per US gallon
Cabinet considered carefully the massive benefits of falling oil prices including the projected windfall savings to Belizean consumers, estimated at more than BZ$163 million this year compared to 2014 and the reduction by 60% in government’s fuel import bill as compared to that same period. At current import prices, the approved tax adjustments to date ensure that consumers continue to keep in excess of two thirds or more than $100 million of this windfall savings.
Even when global per barrel prices peaked at US$147 per barrel in 2009 and remained at elevated levels until recently, Belize’s economy achieved steady, sustained growth. Cabinet and the Ministry of Finance believe these adjustments to be sustainable and equitable, especially in our current low-inflation environment, when compared to other potential tax adjustments which could possibly constrain growth and negatively impact the lower income and economically vulnerable members of society.
Because the price of fuel products is likely to vary with each shipment, the Ministry expects that there may be a substantial downward adjustment in the coming weeks.
The Ministry will continue to provide periodic updates on fuel product prices and duties as necessary.