By Musonda Kalumba and Tinkerbel Mwila
Stakeholders in the energy sector have welcomed the removal of 25 percent excise duty on imported fuel saying it will create stability in the supply and pricing of fuel in the country.
Energy Expert Johnston Chikwanda is of the view that if this tax is reinstated on 1st January 2023 as earlier informed, fuel pump prices would have gone up next week by 25% without even considering the routine monthly adjustment which depends on exchange rate and fuel prices on the international market.
Another Energy Expert Boniface Zulu has welcomed the move by the government to remove customs/import duty from petroleum products supplied in Zambia saying this will reduce the burden on citizens and give the Energy Regulation Board the mandate of not increasing fuel to exorbitant prices.
Mr. Zulu states that international fuel prices are never on Zambia’s side because it is an importing country; hence the decision by the government will help maintain a stable balance and reduce the burden on citizens especially with the removal of fuel subsidies.
Meanwhile, Petroleum Transporters Association of Zambia Secretary General Benson Tembo says the removal of customs duty from petroleum products will help stakeholders to align themselves to the happenings in the region regarding the energy sector.
And Economist Kelvin Chisanga says scrapping off 25% excise duty to make free rate on fuel is a necessary measure which will foster stability in fuel supplies.
Government through the Ministry of Energy has issued a notice to Oil Marketing Companies on the removal of customs/import duty from petroleum products supplied in the country.