Finance Minister, Colm Imbert, has revealed that an unexpected shortfall in the fuel subsidy has been incurred by hikes in the global oil-price due to the Ukraine War.
This means that Government now has to allocate extra funds to the now more costly fuels being imported for TT’s motorists.
Speaking in the Senate on Wednesday, while piloting the Finance (Supplementary Appropriation) (Financial Year 2022) Bill, 2023, Imbert stated that the $800 million will be spent to retire advances owed for the fuel subsidy (which is enjoyed by motorists at the pump.)
Imbert said the sum covered unforeseen expenditure on the fuel subsidy for January-September 2022.
The budget was originally predicated on an estimated global oil-price of US$65 per barrel, but Imbert said Russia’s invasion of the Ukraine in February 2022 had pushed up the world oil-price.
He said, “The price of oil is a double edged sword,” while the higher price brings TT more revenues (for exporting its crude oil for sale), the country also incurs a higher fuel subsidy (paid by government on imported refined fuels such as gasoline.