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News : Local Last Updated: May 13th, 2016 - 07:23:36

Crude fraud
By Marston Gordon
May 13, 2016, 07:13

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I would like to propose that the title of the Jamaican minister of finance be changed to thief minister, retroactive to August 6, 1962.

After sitting on their hands for decades, in 2015 the former thief minister horrible Peter Phillips implemented a program to hedge crude oil prices by introducing a special consumption tax (SCT) of $7.00 per litre on petrol swindling off $2.00 into the consolidated fund with the remainder to pay the price of hedging contracts.

The current thief minister, the horrible Audley Shaw, took the SCT to its ultimate destination, general revenue, and imposed 100% increase to make for $14.00 per litre to pay for his administration election ticket. The ill conceived $1.5m election promise has been delayed and reduced morphing into increased tax threshold for all and reintroduction of progressive taxation for individuals.

I gather that the government is looking at a successor hedge when the current arrangement ends, not September as stated but December 2016. They are apparently as clueless as their predecessor; the technical committee having locked taxpayers into contracts for 90% of our annual requirement above USD$66.00 strike price should immediately be replaced with knowledgeable and experienced people. In January crude oil prices (West Texas Intermediary) fell to USD$30 and currently trades at USD45 per barrel.

The question for sinister Shaw is what happens when the price of crude resumes its march above USD$100 as ultimately it will?

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