Prime Minister Dean Barrow also addressed the recent increase in the price of fuel. At midnight, gas prices increased and according to the Government, the increase was triggered by increasing world gas prices. According to PM Barrow, as a small consumer country, Belize is in for some difficult times in terms of fuel prices because the global prices are increasing at an alarming rate. Barrow explained there is a huge and increasing global demand as the pace of global economic growth accelerates. There is also a decrease in oil supply, a deliberate decision taken by OPEC. The situation worsens with sanctions placed on Venezuela and Iraq, two major oil exporting countries. The sanctions will cause these two oil giants to provide less oil to the global stock.
According to the Prime Minister, Financial Secretary Joseph Waight and the Chairman of ALBA PetroCaribe Belize Energy Limited, John Mencias, have been in discussion with PUMA, the sole importer of fuel in Belize.
Barrow explained that if there is a sharp increase on a single shipment, they will be asking the importer to absorb the cost over a period of time and have the public pay the increase over time rather than in one payment.