Motorists line up for fuel in Lusaka
Motorists line up for fuel in Lusaka

By: Anthony Bwalya – UPND Member

The United Party for National Development (UPND) continues to emphasize the role that individuals, households and small businesses must and ought to play in our collective national endeavor to deliver rapid, sustainable, inclusive economic growth and development.

And part of the process of ensuring that the role of individuals, households and small businesses remains unhindered in contributing to robust economic growth, is to ensure that we deliver on the promise of enhanced, reliable, cheap and affordable access to energy – including fuel.

This is a critical component of our manifesto on energy.

The party’s leadership, as is the general populous, is and remains deeply saddened and dismayed at the recent increase in the pump price of fuel.

As expected, this will injure not only the cost of doing business, but also cause a spike in the general cost of living; pushing many millions of our already vulnerable citizens beyond the margins of poverty and destitution.

With our national growth forecast, already projected at less than 2% for the year 2019, we anticipate that a slow down in economic activity as businesses adjust to and absorb the increase in costs, will further undermine any prospects of any positive growth and ultimately harm – not only government’s own ability to raise revenue but also decapitate the provision of critical public services such as health and education.

This is why the UPND is concerned.

We would also like the public to note with us, that around 43% of the all the cost components of the pump price of fuel are all controllable costs – Energy Regulation Board fees, Excise Duty, OMC margins, dealer margins, VAT; all these and a few more are within the control of the government.

The question is why is the PF government reluctant to give way on one or more of these controllable cost components as a way to lower the pump price of fuel and begin to stimulate economic activity at a micro level?

Self interest. They are primary beneficiaries. They are the principal architects of OMC cartels and transport companies that are getting paid to harm our economy.

UPND’s STRATEGY

The UPND’s strategy is vast and cuts across all the different cost components in respect of the fuel procurement, marketing and distribution cycle. However, the summary of it is that:

1. We shall review all institutional taxes and duties and ensure that such are realigned to, as far as possible, help stir micro economic activity through cheaper access to fuel products. The aim is to reduce or scrap some of the institutional taxes and duties levied at the pump, which adversely affect the final price of fuel.

2. We shall review the role of OMCs in the fuel procurement, marketing and distribution cycle to ensure that any involvement, if at all required, by any such companies in the process of procuring, marketing and distribution of fuel does not result in consumers taking on unnecessary costs at the pump.

This is to say in certain and only in exceptional circumstances, middlemen might be a necessary component as part of the process of efficiently delivering fuel to our people everywhere, BUT we have to absolutely mitigate against the excessive rewarding of middlemen, if and where they are deemed a necessary component of the fuel supply cycle, so that we do not unnecessary punish our people.

3. Allow OMCs to import finished oil products from secure, reliable and credible sources in a transparent manner while we reinvest in Indeni Oil Refinery to update the technology. This is to ensure that the public are not paying for inefficiencies associated with processing the product using olden technology.

All this said, the UPND’s commitment is to deliver a pump price of less than 20 – 25% on the current premium once we get elected.

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33 COMMENTS

    • Wolves in the upndead are lined up eyeing those same cartels.
      Outside Government, ‘mistakes’ are vivid to wannabes, in Government, Anthony Bwalya would not even be close to the corridors of power otherwise he would be in the thick of it.
      Just start mining or rigging oil.
      Why can ZAMBIA use Angolan crude?
      Upndead sounds like a party whose wishes shall just remain inexperienced.

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    • UPND too much day dreaming and wishful thinking…its ok to dream but dreams rarely come true…Mugabe is smiling in his grave the so called masters of democracy cant get anything right even the queen is being mislead and Anthony Bwalya and HH wants to mislead Zambians

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    • @Annoy, have you seen Kaizer in New York City, we looked for him but nothing. We know which bars and restaurants to find those Zambian entourage, and if course we can’t be asking Jean ukuli Kaizer. Hope he is arrested.

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    • @Nostradamus
      No i haven’t seen or bumped into anyone yet…just overhead some lady speaking in Bemba last evening near Penn Station…i dont think she’s part of the PF Lungu Findley delegation….Kaizer Zulu can only act the way he does in Lusaka…in New York is a nonentitie

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    • Mr Anthony Bwalya UPND member….sounds interesting but since you are politician..then you won’t be in good books with me…i cant stand any Politician….you guys will say and do anything to get power but once you are up there…my poor mother and grandmothers who voted you will still be lacking the basic medical care…promises after promises and if you can’t deliver you blame it on the previous govt….look at Zimbabwe its now worse than when Mugabe was in power…Thomas Cook is history because of the failed British Politics

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  1. Good that Anthony you accepted to change from writing about your Kabushi consistuency crap.
    Don’t ever write again that you are the candidate.
    Ifwe tuli baume sana, listen to our advise, we will help you and HH this time.

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  2. It is not right to compare Zambia either to the UK or the US. This is not a like for like comparison.However, the economic problem in Zambia is very simple to solve. The solution is to run a budget surplus by cutting all wasteful spending or in other words simply being efficient in the use of all resources. This is not happening at the moment and as a result all prices are heading north. Once prices increase they are inflexible downward.

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  3. @ Anonymous, you are right, ukulanda kwalyanguka. When they are voted into power still they will continue blaming the PF by saying they have taken over problems from the PF. So it’s better to continue with the same criminals.

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    • I can accept that a lot of trust has been breached in politics because politicians have never kept a single word. But we must first believe that something else is different. That is the first step towards beginning to dream differently. I can assure you, we intend on making good on these commitments.

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  4. The know it all.See how Boris Johnson has been sorted out, as we speak the quack is airborne from UN.Parliament opens tomorrow!! Watch proceedings tomorrow and you will understand everything.
    He will even forget to wear a bamba tomorrow tomorrow.!

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  5. “Once bitten twice” is a popular saying. A party called PF promised to reduce the price of fuel because it was the highest in the region because of taxes imposed on fuel. If anything the price of fuel is even higher under PF. I will not fall for that trick again.

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  6. “Once bitten twice shy” is a popular saying. A party called PF promised to reduce the price of fuel because it was the highest in the region because of taxes imposed on fuel. If anything the price of fuel is even higher under PF. I will not fall for that trick again.

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  7. This gentleman is really pitiful! He like his party leader does not understand the mechanism of fuel pricing. The gullible can believe the tripe he has written here. First, everybody knows GRZ is broke and raising funds through extensive taxation of a narrow band of the formal sector. Now if UPND should scrap some sources of revenue how are they going to run the country? Fact is, in the position Zambia finds itself, middlemen are a necessity. AND THEY ARE NOT ZAMBIANS! Oil is committed to major consumers who are in Joint Venture arrangements with host countries. These are the countries with huge capacity refineries. Then there is the second tier of consumers, the host countries (middle East). We, at 156 litres per day capacity from indeni pale into insignificance and hence have to do with…

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  8. ….scraps peddled by the so called middlemen (big bourgeoisie from the West);. After having been involved with GRZ at existing conditions, they will not buckle to reduce their revenue. They will simply tell us to take a hike after all there is no shortage of customers! The story of middlemen first surfaced with FTJ & MMD, Levy also mumbled something about sidelining them. RB tried by involving Nigerians in collusion with his sons but the middlemen can’t just go away! Sata actually campaigned on the premise that not only will he do away with the middlemen, but he was to scrap off ERB! Now it’s UPND telling us the same story and they think they have just come up with a brand new solution. Chaps, look around you, the price of fuel is in the hands of one who holds the dollar! You can’t…

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  9. ….impact it anyhow! You will just have to abide by the way it is done – on their terms. Otherwise they will ensure that your tenure will be a lot worse before it can get better. Ask Mugabe and a few other countries who have ever tried to take on the capitalist cartels…

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  10. ….impact it anyhow! You will just have to abide by the way it is done – on their terms. Otherwise they will ensure that your tenure will be a lot worse before it can get better. Ask Mugabe and a few other countries who have ever tried to take on the capitalist cartels.

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    • @David, point taken. But would you care to explain to some of us less- enlightened how a country like Botswana, also landlocked and not a single drop of oil under it have managed to keep there pump costs down?

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    • “First, everybody knows GRZ is broke and raising funds through extensive taxation of a narrow band of the formal sector. Now if UPND should scrap some sources of revenue how are they going to run the country?”

      I could be wrong but wouldn’t scraping some of these inhibiting taxes on fuel actually stimulate economic activity? I.e. lower operational costs for the local businesses? Just a different line of thought. Like I said, I could be wrong and you might be the expert in the field.

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    • @Kapotwe, you couldn’t have picked a more inappropriate comparison in Botswana!
      Botswana has a population of 2.25m and has a comfortable balance sheet of forex reserves coming in from the diamonds and cattle. Fuel for the mining and agricultural activities is subsidized and the trajectory of development in these areas is constantly on the up! The problem we have in Zambia is subsidy of consumption and a very small manufacturing sector. If you care to analyze the complaints are coming from motorists. Industrial corporations have contract pricing in place and will only feel the effect after the lapse of the agreement

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  11. HH has a good point but it’s the Zambians who can’t see! Too many bakandile pa Zed! You have too many old men still wanting to eat! They have come up with tuntemba like ERB to just pay up and down lip service to Energy costs! You can’t get rid of the Mafia middlemen from the oil industry. They are deeply entrenched and they sponsor candidates into public office to protect their selfish interests and businesses! I am just wondering who owns the new filling station which Kambwili talked about recently, including the many trucks PEPs bought to transport fuel inland. It’s big and lucrative! But what shall it profit a man to win the whole world and go naked the way they came?

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  12. It seems this Anthony Bwalya is not aspiring Honourable after all. Looks like the scheme is bigger than we thought. He us actually challenging HH for leadership of UPND. Why do I say so? Because these statements from Bwalya in recent days are actually policy statements, the preserve of UPND leader HH. Do you think that Bwalya just dropped from nowhere? Have you ever heard of him before this week? Watch this space.

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  13. So UPND , brace for a bemba president, back HH is anow a tired old old man doomed to failure with trible baggage round his neck since 2006.

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  14. #13.1 kapotwe, Botswana does not need so many taxes to fund its services, Zambia like UK dies rely heavily on taxes. One time it was estimated that the pump price of petrol was comprised of up to 40% taxes levied throughout the supply chain, it was the highest fuel tax in the world.
    So don’t let HH dupe you that he will give you free mealie meal, free education, free medicines and hospitals, free electricity, cheap fuel etc etc, and run a government at the same time. It is free garbage from his motor mouth.

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  15. #13.1 kapotwe, Botswana does not need so many taxes to fund its services, Zambia like UK does rely heavily on taxes. One time it was estimated that the pump price of petrol in UK was comprised of up to 40% taxes levied throughout the supply chain, it was the highest fuel tax in the world.
    So don’t let HH dupe you that high fuel prices only occur in Zambia, and that he will give you free mealie meal, free education, free medicines and hospitals, free electricity, cheap fuel etc etc, and run a government at the same time. It is free garbage from his motor mouth.

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  16. Liyashi ya mu kachasu this is what cobra used to preach day in day out but once he took over his SG jumped on the band wagon when he saw the profits therein the controlled prices trebled. At the treasury MCS had a man with a taste for red wine and nothing else he went on a randomn borrowing pushing repayments to a time he probably will be a fossil

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  17. There is such a thing as over taxing because you have either run out of ideas in ensuring a wider tax base or you want to fatten the fat cats even further. You cannot keep raising monies through new taxes each time your deficits get worse. Planned well, less tax and getting rid of unnecessary middlemen that raise the costs, can actually stimulate the economy as someone else above, points out.

    It is all about leadership, planning, discipline and the acumen to actually see it through – which, to any reasonable thinking member of the society, the PF government does not clearly have.

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