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Dealers lash out at ERC over fuel prices

By Antony Gitonga | Published Tue, February 13th 2018 at 11:57, Updated February 13th 2018 at 12:02 GMT +3

The Association of Petrol Station Dealers, Transporters and Wholesalers has taken issue with the Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) over the fuel prices in the country.

The association has threatened legal action against the government agency over wholesale prices of petroleum products.

Through its leaders, the traders accused ERC of publishing retail pump prices but not wholesale prices as required by the law.

The association chairman Francis Wanyange said that the fuel prices were arrived at without any public participation as envisaged by the constitution.

Addressing the press in Naivasha over the weekend, Wanyange termed this as a failure by the commission leaving the traders to incur huge losses.

He noted that over the years commission had been publishing retail pump prices only and not wholesale prices which was against the energy regulations of 2010.

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“The commission has not published transport costs and delivery rates although they are a key component of the retail pump prices in terms of Regulations 4 (a) and (b). As a result the wholesalers and transporters are eating into the mark-ups of the retailers thereby reducing the maximum allowed margin for the retailer to uneconomic figures,” he said.

 He said that the association had in the past written to the commission over the matter but the response given was unsatisfactory and unhelpful.

 Wanyange demanded that the commission involve the fuel traders in future determination of prices before publication of the price list.

 “We are demanding that ERC publishes both retail and wholesale prices in future publications in compliance with energy regulations of 2010,” he said.

 He lamented over the rising fuel cost in the country noting that this was affecting the economy with the price of basic commodities rising by the day.

 Wanyange added that they were ready to take legal against the commission to comply with the law while reviewing the fuel prices.

 This came in the wake of reports that plans were underway by the State to increase duty on the price of kerosene in the coming weeks.

The move according to the PS in charge of Petroleum Andrew Kamau, was meant to stop adulteration of diesel using kerosene.

“We plan to increase duty on kerosene to the same level as that of diesel and we are in the process of introducing a 6kg gas cylinder targeting the lower market,” he said.

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