DA calls for an extension of the fuel levy tax relief

Issued by Kevin Mileham MP – DA Shadow Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy
22 May 2022 in News

Please find attached English and Afrikaans soundbites by Kevin Mileham MP.

The DA is calling for an extension of the fuel tax cut enacted by the Minister of Finance, Enoch Godongwana, beyond the end of the end of May deadline.

The admission by the Minister of Mineral Resources and Energy, Gwede Mantashe, that the general fuel levy cut won’t be extended beyond the end of May, is an unacceptable dereliction of duty and a failure to enact a sustainable rationalisation of the composition of the fuel price.

Together with Godongwana, they had two months within which to consult on whether to extend the cut in the fuel levy or provide a more permanent solution through a review of the composition of the fuel price.

That they failed to do either of the two, demonstrates the government’s lack of urgency in cushioning South Africans from the growing challenges of an economy in free fall.

In the two months that Mantashe and Godongwana sat on their hands and did nothing, the DA initiated a process to introduce a Private Members Bill (PMB) that would codify, through legislation, the deregulation of the fuel price to encourage competition between wholesalers and retailers. The PMB will seek to protect the consumer from exorbitant price increases by decoupling the basic fuel price from government taxes and levies and additional margins used by wholesalers and retailers.

If projections by players in the fuel industry hold, motorists should expect an increase in fuel price by R3.50 in the first week of June. This would lead to an upward pressure on inflation, hitting consumers directly through rising transport and food costs. And these prices do not ebb and flow like the fuel price. South Africans are already struggling to make ends meet and unemployment is soaring.

As soon as the fuel tax levy cut is extended, Godongwana should immediately engage with Mantashe to find a permanent solution to South Africa’s fuel pricing system which exacts an unnecessary financial burden on consumers. Failure to do so will worsen the country’s already dire economic outlook, increase the rate of unemployment and entrench hunger among poor communities.