Posted: Thursday, April 9, 2020. 6:35 pm CST.
Butane importers appeal to GOB to continue selling at reduced prices
to help Belizeans
The three major importers of butane in Belize, Zeta Gas, Gas Timza, and Belize Western Energy Limited, have written to the Government of Belize (GOB) appealing for them to continue selling gas at a reduced
rate as a means of assisting Belizeans to cope with the financial difficulty brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The companies acknowledged a letter issued by the Belize Bureau of Standards (BBS) sent on April 7 which notes that the companies selling butane at the discounted prices is a violation of the Supplies Control Act, Section 293 of the Laws of Belize, but stressed that it was never their intention to violate any laws.
“We were sensitive to the fact that many of our customers would have to be at home for an extended period of time and would have lost their jobs or had reduced income. However, our companies were still paying the required business tax on all sales,” the companies said.
The companies said that they were able to sell at a reduced rate because of a significant reduction in the global price of oil and also noted that they give distributors discounted rates as well to keep them from being adversely affected by the promotional rates being offered, which allowed the distributors to pass those savings onto their customers as well. The companies said that they would like to
continue supporting the Belizean public by offering lower prices, but cannot risk their employees being arrested over the Supplies Control Act violation.
“We are therefore appealing to your good senses to allow the promotional prices as it is unconscionable to raise the prices for LPG, in light of your letters, when we all know that world prices are low and all our consumers are experiencing difficult economic times,” the companies added.
They noted that neither the government nor the distributors have suffered any financial loss on account of the promotional prices.
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