The National Petroleum Authority (NPA) has reacted to claims by Parliament’s Ranking Member on the Finance Committee, Cassiel Ato Forson that it failed to seek parliamentary approval before the collection of some levies.
These are; the Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation Company Limited (BOST) margin, Fuel Marking Margin and the Unified Petroleum Pricing Fund (UPPF).
According to the authority, in a statement issued by the Corporate Affairs Division on Thursday, the assertion is flawed as the move is “specified in the Prescribed Petroleum Pricing Formula Regulations 2012, LI 2186.”
“The NPA wishes to state that its mandate to collect, charge or receive revenue with respect to the UPPF, BOST and Fuel Marking Margins is derived from the National Petroleum Authority (Prescribed Petroleum Pricing Formula), Regulations 2012, Legislative Instrument (LI) 2186, passed by the Parliament of the Republic of Ghana in July 2012.
On the back of this justification, the NPA insists that the said charges in the price buildup are not illegal.
Mr Forson had blamed the rampant increase in fuel prices at the doorstep of the NPA who, he said were responsible for astronomically driving up the levies.
“These margins must be approved by an act of parliament through the Fees and Charges and Miscellaneous Legislative Instrument. Therefore, the NPA is collecting these fees illegally.
“So they are acting with impunity. So the NPA should stop collecting those fees because they are illegal”, the MP told journalists.
The Ajumako Enyan Essiam MP was reacting in the wake of the Minority’s demand that government suspends the Special Petroleum Tax and review the sanitation levy in the 2022 budget.
On the increasing levies, the NPA explained that the Fuel Marking Margin are wholly based on the cost of undertaking the prescribed activities and not for any other reason.
“These margins were not just increased in 2021 but have been increased periodically since 2009 to this present time, due in part to the increases in the cost of operations in these activities over the time,” the statement indicated.
“Regulations 9 to 13 of the LI 2186 determines how to review the prescribed petroleum pricing formula, which states that the pricing formula shall include these margins and the Authority shall indicate these margins to take care of the above intended costs accordingly.”
It added that “it is without doubt that the absence of these margins in the price buildup would have hindered the achievement of the objectives for which these margins were introduced into the prescribed petroleum pricing formula.”
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