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December 6, 2019

Fine skyrockets and prison time double for violation of LPG/butane in Supplies Control Act

Posted: Friday, December 6, 2019. 12:09 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: Breaking Belize News has been forwarded a copy of the original text of the Supplies Control (Amendment) Act, 2019, which after amendment would be read and construed as one with the Supplies Control Act.

Section 2 reads, “Section 4 of the principal Act is amended by deleting the words “six months or to a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars” and replacing it with the words “twelve months or to a fine not exceeding twenty five thousand dollars”.

The imprisonment time is thus double the original while the maximum fine is increased 25 fold, representing a 2,400 percent increase.

On Wednesday, the House of Representatives passed this amendment to the Supplies Control Act, increasing penalties imposed for contravention of the subsidiary laws made under the Act. It deliberately targets importers of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG/butane) who recently set prices well below the price regulations set on November 15.

The argument presented when the bill is introduced in the Senate, as it was in the House, is that the bill  will disallow importers to get away with controlling the market ahead of the arrival of the National Gas Company Limited next year, or eating the loss in support of suddenly cheaper butane for the Christmas season.


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