Users of Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) must be ready to pay commercial prices if a proposal currently before cabinet is approved.


The proposal according to the Communication Consultant at the Energy Ministry Edward Bawa is to scrap the subsidies on LPG in order for all users -both domestic and commercial - to pay realistic prices for the product.

There has been shortage of the product for weeks with long queues forming at the various distribution outlets in the country.
This is in spite of government assurances that the product will be made available last week Friday.

Edward Bawa in an interview with Joy News attributed the shortage of the product and its attendant long queues to the overwhelming number of commercial drivers who have converted their petrol-powered engines to LPG because the latter is relatively cheaper.

It is his believe that once the subsidy is removed, realistic prices will be paid and the product will no longer be in short supply, adding the rallying cry of Ghanaians is not necessarily on the cost but the availability of the product.

He argued Ghanaians will be better off with the product on the market, irrespective of the cost, than having the erratic shortages.

Edward Bawa is under no illusion what the effect of the policy will have on domestic users but said the policy is not “cast in stone” and that the appropriate changes will be made to satisfy all users.

It is however not yet clear if cabinet will accept to implement the policy.

Mr. Bawa also blamed the previous NPP government for not putting the appropriate infrastructure into place for the storage of LPG.

He said the Energy Minister has taken drastic steps to resolve the problem and has asked the Tema Oil Refinery to provide the cost proposals on Tema Oil Refinery’s pipelines - the cost of TOR's pipelines alone has been pegged at GH$ 33 million.

He said the Minister is also in discussion with the Bulk Oil Storage Transport for the badge system - which will take the LPG directly from the Vessels to the Oil Marketing Companies.

He was hopeful the two projects will be completed in 12 months and that will considerably improve upon the infrastructural base and decrease the shortages in the system.

 

Nathan Gadugah/Myjoyonline.com/Ghana

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