Government agrees to explore other avenues for petroleum retailers relief

Government agrees to explore other avenues for petroleum retailers relief

NASSAU, BAHAMAS- On Monday, the government announced that it has agreed to explore alternative solutions to bring relief to petroleum retailers, who have been advocating for an increase in their profit margins on fuel.

Prime Minister Davis and senior government officials met with representatives from the Bahamas Petroleum Retailers Association to discuss the challenges faced by the industry and the need for a sustainable solution that does not negatively impact consumers. While the government is sensitive to the plight of petroleum retailers, it is also committed to acting in a manner that does not impose further financial burden on consumers. The government has therefore agreed to explore other avenues to bring relief to the retailers, and further discussions with other stakeholders are scheduled to take place within the next week and a half to arrive at a conclusion.

Vasco Bastian, vice-president of The Bahamas Petroleum Retailers Association  described yesterday’s meeting as “productive” and “candid.” 

“The Prime Minister was very accommodating, very straight forward and very determine to out this whole thing behind. He thanked us for our patience and commended us for what we are trying to do. He stressed the need for Bahamian to continent to excel. It was a very candid and productive meeting. I applaud him for taking the time out to speak with us,” said Bastian.

Bastian said the issue of a margin adjustment is still “on the table.” “The Prime Minister is thinking long term and not just a temporary fix. He wants to make sure that whatever the government does is beneficial to retailers long term. That was all we needed to ear and I have every confidence it will be followed by action. We all left there very happy.”

Last week, 80% of petroleum retailers on New Providence decided to take action to reduce their operating costs after discussions with the government over their current fuel margins did not yield desired results. Economic Affairs Minister Michael Halkitis stated that the government has no plans to increase fuel prices for motorists in the immediate future.