CRM implementation begins as operators call for tax reduction
Adnan Adams Mohammed
As Ghanaians are being encouraged to embrace efforts by the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) to implement the Cylinder Recirculation Model, which in part designed to address safety in the discharge of gas products and create jobs in the country, the Association of Oil Marketing Companies is calling on government to reduce taxes on Liquified Petroleum Gas (LPG) to make it cheaper and more accessible for Ghanaians to achieve targets set.
The CRM policy, which is aimed at reducing and possibly eliminating LPG-related accidents and fatalities, also seeks to improve the current LPG usage in the country from 25 percent to 50 percent by the year 2030.
“We have been involved in discussions to determine what is in for us, and even though it is taking time, we believe it will be a win-win situation. And I’m happy to say that we are making progress”, the Chief Executive of the Association, Kwaku Agyeman Duah said when speaking in Koforidua on the new Liquefied Petroleum Gas Promotion Policy as part of the NPA’s nationwide sensitization tour. He added that, a reduction in the taxes is the best way forward.
“The second thing we need to get our heads on is the pricing of LPG. Even Burkina Faso, who pass their LPG through Ghana, have a cheaper price than us. So we would like to plead with Government to remove the taxes on LPG so that it will encourage more people to patronize it.”
Speaking at same event, Nana Twumasi Dankwa, Gyeasehene of the traditional area, said the policy has come at a time when industry experts continue to explore ways of improving safety in the petroleum sector.
“It’s a policy that will not only create jobs but also improve our safety, and I encourage all of us to give the NPA our maximum support in this area,” he said.
The stakeholder engagement is an ongoing exercise by the NPA to galvanise public support for the policy, educate consumers on the policy, and also seek their views – which are to be incorporated into a final draft document before the final rollout.
The NPA intends carrying out the pilot-programme in Kade and Denkyembor, both in the Eastern Region.
Nana Twumasi Dankwa advised the NPA to broaden consultations to the community level, so it can dispel claims being made by persons who are not ready to embrace the good of the policy.
Chief Executive of the NPA, Hassan Tampuli, said the NPA will continue to engage with the public on the policy, since a people-friendly policy is what his outfit is determined to roll out.
“Every region we go to, new ideas emerge; and we believe here in the Eastern Region something new will come up.”
Again, Mr. Tampuli used the opportunity to dispel claims that the policy will lead to job losses. According to him, there is no truth in that; and he challenged anyone with counter-arguments to come forward and discuss them with his outfit.
Mr. Tampuli said gas explosions have disfigured people who are living with unfortunate effects. He also said the deaths have been one too many, and it is therefore important for the situation to be addressed once and for all.
The Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta in the mid-year budget review announced an upward adjustment in a number of taxes in the hope of raising more revenues to execute government’s programmes and policies.
Appearing before the legislature, Mr. Ofori-Atta stated that government is proposing an upward adjustment in a few levies including the Road Fund Levy, the Energy Debt Recovery Levy; and the Price Stabilisation and Recovery Levy to bring the ratios close to twenty-one percent to help bridge the financing requirements.
“Government proposes to increase the Energy Sector Levies by GHp 20 per litre for petrol and diesel and GHp 8 per kg for LPG, so as to increase the inflows to enable Government issue additional bonds to pay down our energy sector debt obligations. Based on current indicative prices for petrol and diesel this translates to GHp 90 per gallon,” he said.