UNP tells govt. to reduce fuel prices further

by Maheesha Mudugamuwa

The benefit of plummeting oil prices in the world market should be passed on to the people, Convenor of the UNP trade union organisation at the Ceylon Petroleum Corporation (CPC) Ananda Palitha said yesterday. He said the local fuel prices could be slashed drastically.

He told The Island that the recent fuel price reductions were insufficient as at yesterday the price of a barrel of crude oil was only USD 86 and the price of a litre of refined petrol shipped to the Colombo port cost only Rs. 70.

But, the price of Lanka Petrol 92 Octane in the local market was Rs 150, Palitha said adding that the government could give one litre of petrol at Rs. 120 and one litre of diesel at Rs. 100 after adding all government taxes and other costs.

Responding to Petroleum Industries Minister Anura Priyadarshana Yapa’s recent claim that all the countries in the world were levying taxes on petroleum products, Palitha said that they levied taxes according to the per capita income of the people of the country.

Referring to gas prices, Palitha noted that a 12.3 kg cylinder of gas could be given at Rs. 925 in Sri Lanka but the current price was Rs. 1,896.

Meanwhile, the International Atomic Energy Agency predicts that the current decline in global oil prices will continue into 2015 and they may drop to USD 40 per barrel.

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