A significant drop in the price of fuel could be on the cards for South Africans if the Fuel Price Deregulation Bill is passed into law.
A SIGNIFICANT drop in the price of fuel could be on the cards for South Africans if the Fuel Price Deregulation Bill is passed into law.
Kevin Mileham, the DA’s spokesperson for Mineral Resources and Energy, said it would reduce by about R9 a litre, taking the fuel price to R17.50.
He said this is the maximum they could achieve with the proposals they are putting on the table, and explained the three proposals.
Scrapping the general fuel levy
R3.93 per litre. And that is just a tax on the fuel price. It goes into the national revenue fund and is used to fund the day-to-day projects of the government.
Amending the Road Accident Fund levy
R2.18 per litre. To allow those road users who have valid comprehensive third-party insurance and can prove that they have it to claim a tax rebate when they submit their annual tax returns against their fuel purchases.
Fuel Deregulation Bill
Here the DA wants to create competition in the fuel sector. South Africa is one of the few countries with a centrally determined fuel price.
In most countries the fuel price is determined by the market. This would allow people to import cheaper fuel, wholesalers to distribute cheaper fuel and retailers to compete on the basis of price.
“It is not targeted at the retailer and wholesaler margin specifically. It is targeted at the entire fuel price and the entire fuel value chain. There has been a concern raised that this proposal will drive people to self-service petrol stations.
“We are specifically leaving the element of the Petroleum Products Act, which this bill seeks to regulate in that it prohibits self-service at petrol stations. So that is not a concern,” said Mileham.
The second concern that has been raised is that deregulation will lead to monopolistic practices, price manipulation and anti-competitive behaviour.
“We have obligated the Minister of Energy to monitor fuel prices and where he becomes aware of such behaviour to immediately report it to the Competition Commission.”
Mileham said there has been significant support for their proposals.
“We have more than 139,000 people who have signed our petition so far, calling on government to do these three things and we have written to Minister (Gwede) Mantashe.
“The Fuel Deregulation Bill will go to Parliament and has the support of various industry bodies, including long-distance freight associations, bus companies and taxi associations and the like.
“This bill is in the interest of bringing the price down, to make fuel cheaper for all South Africans.
“We need to recognise that the fuel price has an enormous impact on the everyday cost of living,” said Mileham.