‘Gas cylinder likely to cost KD2.5 – KD5 in near future’ – Restaurants, shops, hotels to bear the brunt

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KUWAIT CITY, Aug 16: The committee in charge of reviewing the governmental subsidies has been studying a proposal to increase the cost of cylinder of liquefied petroleum gas, reports Al-Rai daily quoting informed sources. They explained that one of the suggestions is to increase the cost by six times while another is to increase it by three times its current cost.

The committee conducted a study in this regard and discovered that the state bears about KD 4.25 of the actual price of KD 5 for each cylinder of gas irrespective of whether these cylinders of gas are being used in homes, shops or restaurants. The committee also discovered that the total subsidy spent by the government for cylinders of gas is KD 60 million every year.

These facts have led the committee to consider revising the current price of a cylinder of gas which is 750 fils each. The sources said the first suggestion is to increase the cost of a cylinder of gas from 750 fils to KD 2.5, which will save about KD 25 million a year for the state.

However, Kuwait Petroleum Corporation has suggested completely lifting the subsidy of gas cylinder such that each cylinder of gas will cost its actual price of KD 5. The sources said relevant analyses were carried out to discover that the use of cylinders of gas by citizens and expatriates is about 10-15 percent each while 70 percent of the cylinders of gas are used by restaurants, shops and hotels.

They insisted that it is unacceptable for the state to bear such a high cost in favor of commercial companies, as the latter should be paying the actual price of the cylinders of gas, stressing that the subsidy should be directed to only those who deserve it.

The sources disclosed that majority of the members of the committee are considering the suggestion for applying the cost of KD 2.5 per cylinder of gas, adding that some members are thinking of preparing a proposal to exclude private houses from paying KD 2.5 for each cylinder of gas, as they are keen to ensure the subsidy is given to those who deserve it.

Meanwhile, the Subsidy Committee is studying a proposal to exempt fishermen and owners of boats from the government’s decision to increase the fuel prices this September such that they will continue to pay the subsidized cost of fuel.

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