Business News of Friday, 12 January 2018

Source: thebftonline.com

Taxes, levies to be imposed on marine gas oil

Hassan Tampuli3 Hassan Tampuli, CEO of the National Petroleum Authority

The National Petroleum Authority (NPA) is set to introduce some taxes and other charges on Marine Gas Oil (GMO) operations in the country, Hassan Tampuli – CEO of the NPA, has disclosed.

The move, he noted, is aimed at curbing some illegalities the Authority has observed in the petroleum downstream industry.

“We have, in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance, proposed the imposition of taxes, levies and margins on all marine gas oil to discourage criminal elements from distorting the market,” he said.

Mr. Tampuli, who was speaking at a Frimps Oil rebranding ceremony in Accra, said the Authority for some time now has observed that requests for the commodity have increased and the numbers are alarming.

The situation, he noted, has necessitated the suspension of marine gas oil operations in the country.

“We have been receiving requests for marine gas oil, which in essence is diesel to bunker ocean-going vessels, and the volumes have been increasing over time. We observed that there has been some 2000 percent increase in the demand, and this cannot be mathematically feasible so we have had to interrogate the demands.

“We checked, and it turns out that some of the vessels that were claimed to be bunkered were not even in Ghana. So somebody takes the product and immediately dumps it on the Ghanaian market without paying the necessary taxes, levies and margins,” he said.

He further added that failure to curb these illegalities will undermine the core function of government supporting the private sector to thrive.

He said: “You don’t only distort the market but you create an avenue for businesses which want to do genuine business to begin to follow you, because they cannot compete with you; and if they cannot compete with you, they have to lay-off their workers.

“The business of government is to create an enabling environment for businesses to thrive and create jobs. We intend to give opportunities for the private sector to operate, expand and create more jobs. What is happening right now is something that goes contrary to the above aims of government, and we will stop at nothing to stamp out this bad practice,” he stressed.