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Appeals to deliberate govt petition against verdict on fuel price hike

KUWAIT CITY, Dec 3: The Court of Appeals on Sunday will deliberate on the petition filed by the government against the verdict of the First Instance Court which revoked the decision to increase fuel prices. Earlier, the government argued that the decision to increase fuel prices was taken through legal channels so the First Instant Court’s verdict should be revoked, although it did not order nullification of the decision but the government demanded for overturning of the ruling to be overturned and dismissal of the lawsuit.

In previous sessions, Attorney Nawaf Al-Fuzaei accused the government of taking illegal procedures which led to the increase in fuel prices, considering Kuwait National Petroleum Corporation (KNPC) has the authority to take such actions in accordance with Decree Number 6/1986 which states the corporation has sole mandate over fuel price hikes.

However, the government argued that ministerial decision number 32/2016 is considered a recommendation, not an administrative decision. It pointed out that the litigant misinterpreted the law, as the latter described the ministerial recommendation to be a decision upon which the fuel hike was based on.

The government also argued that the litigant misinterpreted the law on the money earned by KNPC as taxes, whereas any financial returns to KNPC are regarded as public money, not taxes. This came in response to Al-Fuzaei’s argument, when he invoked Article 134 of the Constitution which states, “No general tax may be established, amended, or abolished except through a law.

No one may be exempted, wholly or partially, from the duty to pay such taxes except in cases specified by law. No one may be required to pay any other tax, fee or imposition except within the limits of the law.” In this case, the decision of the government was not presented to the Parliament in order to be supported by legislation, let alone the failure to adhere to Article Four of Law Number 6/1980 on the establishment of KNPC and its mandates.

By Jaber Al-Hamoud Al-Seyassah Staff and Agencies

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