Malawi needs fuel pricing reforms – MCCI

Malawi Confederation of Chambers of Commerce and Industry (MCCCI) has called for reforms in the pricing of fuel, saying Malawi is experiencing severe shortage of fuel because of the poor performance on the availability of foreign exchange.

The call was made by MCCI’s Hope Chavula at a seminar in Blantyre jointly organised by Economics Association of Malawi (ECAMA), Malawi Economic Justice network (Mejn) and the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS on procuring national fuel supplies.

“Pricing of fuel is a major area that needs reform to reflect what is captured in the automatic price adjustment formula,” Chavula said.

Chavula: Fuel pricing reforms

“Letting prices adjust according to the automatic pricing may help to curtail demand when prices rise. The last time prices were adjusted was in January 2011 but oil prices in the international market have gone up,” said Chavula.

“On a number of occasions, government has abandoned the principles of automatic pricing and opt to manage price. At the current high demand for petroleum in the country, abandoning the automatic pricing mechanism may not be a best option,” he said.

Puma Energy Chief Executive Officer Dr Davis Lanjesi explained that the process to procure needs to be done 60 days in advance.

“We need to plan 60 days in advance to get fuel supplies on time,” said Lanjesi.

Puma boss told participants at the seminar that the port of Beira in Mozambique receives 80 percent of Malawi’s fuel supplies while Dar es Salaam in Tanzania handles 15 percent and another Mozambique source, Nacala takes the remaining 5 percent.

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