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HomeLocal NewsPromises of cheap fuel in 2021 were feasible - Chikwanda

Promises of cheap fuel in 2021 were feasible – Chikwanda

By NATION REPORTER 

POLITICIANS who were promising cheap fuel prior to the 2021 general election were in order because prices of fuel on the international market had significantly collapsed, Energy Expert, Johnstone Chikwanda, has said. 

Dr Chikwanda explained that during the Covid-19 era, the prices of petroleum products on the international market had significantly collapsed.

He, however, mentioned that there was a fixed price in Zambia at that time which was maintained for about two years regardless of the capacity to bring the prices down.

He said the prices on the international market had collapsed and it took long to come out of the curve and everyone at that time who campaigned that they were going to bring the prices down knew what they were doing. 

Dr Chikwanda said this when he featured on Diamond TV.

“So, the promise that were made earlier, maybe people were looking at the prices that were on the international market, the exchange rate then, the level of taxes that were there, the country had a lot of taxes and fees that need to be dealt with that would have significantly affected the prices then,” he said.

Meanwhile, Dr Chikwanda stated the UPND Government has tried its best in stabilising the pump prices of fuel in the country.

Dr Chikwanda said had Government been reckless, they would have revoked the waiver and fuel would have been above K40 by now and covenanting the TAZAMA calling refined products was also a measure to reduces the prices.

He said Government has maintained the 25 percent customs duty waiver on petroleum product.

He also noted that the monthly review of fuel prices worked well in a stable environment.

In the case of Zambia, he said, it was not only the prices on the international market that was a problem but also the unstable exchange rate which gives a tinkering monthly price.

Dr Chikwanda said that was why the monthly review of fuel prices has received widespread resistance from all stakeholders, including some Oil Marketing Companies who had initially bought into the idea.

He said the coming of the monthly review of fuel prices policy was coincided with a lot of uncertainties in the market that was why the policy was resisted because the idea was not working well which calls for Government to relook at the policy. 

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