The provision of tax concessions for fuel might curb the percentage of any price surge and fuel imports may have to be ceased in any event was tax concessions not provided and a price hike not accepted, revealed Energy Minister Udaya Gammanpila speaking to reporters following a programme held yesterday (20).
“I sent the letter seeking tax concessions for fuel to the Finance Minister on Friday. It will take some time for him to sit down with his officials, discuss and decide how to do it. Either we have to stop importing fuel to the country, or the issue of not providing any tax concession may have to be put on the people. The only way to prevent this from happening is to lift the taxes on fuel,” Gammanpila warned.
The Energy Minister added: “If tax relief is given, the surge in fuel prices may be carried out on a very small scale. If we are to not provide the tax relief we will have to increase the price of a litre of diesel by Rs. 52 and a litre of petrol by Rs. 19. If neither should proceed, I can say with great confidence that we will lose money to import fuel. I was blamed for saying that a daily power cut of an hour or an hour and a half may have to be taken place. But now there are power outages without notice.”