Haitian government to increase gas prices by more than 60% to keep up with Dominican Rep.

Posted by hougansydney.com on Thursday, May 11, 2017 Under: Economy
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The Haitian government is looking at different ways to increase its annual fiscal, as international funds are becoming more scarce as the United Nations Peacekeepers are beginning to leave the country. 

The new government of Moise/Lafontant, just like its predecessors', have turned to one source of revenue that has proven to be very reliable over the years, to make up for the difference. Petroleum products.

Earlier this week, the Haitian Prime Minister Jack Guy Lafontant, at the meeting with leaders of Public Drivers' unions announced that his government will be increasing the price of petroleum products across the country by more than 60%.

A gallon of gasoline which is currently priced at 189 gourdes will cost 305 gourdes; a gallon of Diesel fuel currently costs 149 gourdes will be 237 gourdes; and a gallon of kerosene will go from 148 gourdes to 231 gdes

According to Guichard Dore, President Jovenel Moise's Special advisor, the increase was to prevent Dominican drivers from buying gas at the border at a significantly cheaper price.

Between 20 percent and 30 percent of fuels subsidized by the Haitian government are bought and consumed by the Dominican Republic, according to the Haitian Ministry of Economy and Finance.

"For certain types of fuel, there is up to $ 2 difference between Haiti and the Dominican Republic. Since there is a big difference between the prices of the two countries, there will always be trade at this level. The best of things is that prices between the two countries stay closer, " said Economy Minister Jude Alix Patrick Solomon.

This explanation was dismissed by Dominican authorities and many in Haiti as an excuse, but official data of gas prices around the world does show that the price of a gallon of gas, in fact costs more in the Dominican Republic than in Haiti.

The average price of gasoline around the world is 3.89 U.S. or 233.40 gourdes per gallon. However, there is substantial difference in these prices among countries. As a general rule, richer countries have higher prices while poorer countries and the countries that produce and export oil have significantly lower prices. The differences in prices across countries are due to the various taxes and subsidies for gasoline. 

All countries have access to the same petroleum prices of international markets but then decide to impose different taxes. As a result, the retail price of gasoline is different. Haiti in its case, buys oil at an even lower rate since it is supplied mostly by Venezuela, with preferential terms under the PetroCaribe agreement.

The average gasoline price for Dominican Republic from 30-Jan-2017 to 08-May-2017 was 214.62 Dominican Peso or 302.61 gourdes per gallon.

So the price difference of a gallon of gasoline between Haiti and the Dominican Republic is 113.61 gdes or  $1.89

While it does make sense for the Haitian government to increase the price of gas to keep up with its neighbor,  such a hike will likely result in strikes and protests.

In : Economy 

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