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Jul 5, 2022

Premium Gas Price Skyrocket Overnight

The price of premium gasoline has ballooned to over seventeen dollars per gallon at the pumps. While Belizeans are feeling the pinch of yet another increase, the Government of Belize has been making attempts at providing some relief to motorists. Copies of two Statutory Instruments passed in the month of June reveals that G.O.B has substantially reduced the excise duty on diesel and regular gasoline. To keep diesel prices below fourteen dollars per gallon, G.O.B. has reduced the excise duty of diesel from three dollars U.S per gallon, to one cent U.S per gallon. To keep the price of a gallon of regular gasoline below fourteen dollars, G.O.B. has also reduced the excise duty on regular gasoline from three dollars and twenty nine cents U.S per gallon to seventy-five cents per gallon.  On the other hand, the excise duty on premium gasoline remains unchanged. And, while it may come as no comfort to motorists, the decrease in excise duty on diesel and regular gasoline has led to over eight million dollars in revenue losses for the Government of Belize. These are revenues that would otherwise be invested in healthcare, education, infrastructure development, social protection programs, etc. The rationale behind the reduction in excise duty in diesel and regular gas is to offer support to the productive sector. In the absence of these reductions, the price of diesel and regular gasoline would be on par with the price of premium gasoline at the pumps, well over seventeen dollars. On the other hand, considering the millions of dollars in revenue that G.O.B. has foregone by reducing the excise duty on diesel and regular gasoline, the question of sustainability arises. How long will G.O.B. be able to maintain this approach as oil prices are forecasted to continue trending upwards? We will continue to follow.

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