Posted: Wednesday, May 13, 2020. 2:48 pm CST.
By Aaron Humes: Zeta Gas/Southern Choice Butane promises in its advertising to “keep your fire burning,” but its lights have been turned out by the Government of Belize since April 30.
On Monday, its supply in Belize ran out, putting 350 jobs at risk, direct and indirect.
After not receiving word from National Gas Company Limited (NGC) about when it will sell wholesale LPG already on the ground in Belize (NGC says it must get approval from Government) and at what price, Zeta is asking to import gas again to feed its 30 percent market share divided countrywide.
Zeta Gas Belize is subsidiary to a regional company based in Guatemala, which has the second-largest maritime terminal of its kind in the region, storing 30 million gallons of LPG (NGC claims its terminal stores 1.5 million gallons.
Zeta charges that NGC and its backers have no experience in the industry compared to their 30 years’ worth, and that their monopoly reduces supply, risks shortages, makes the product more expensive and operates essentially without rules.
Zeta and its rivals turned partners Gas Tomza and Belize Western Energy Ltd are before the court on a constitutional claim and intend to press for an interim injunction at the Caribbean Court of Justice.
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