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Fiji Time: 12:56 AM on Thursday 24 April

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2c more for fuel

Ropate Valemei
Wednesday, February 06, 2013

AN additional two cents has been added to every litre of fuel imported into the country as part of the Carbon or Green Tax effective January 1 this year.

Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority chief executive officer Jitoko Tikolevu said this was part of government's initiative to promote a clean environment.

He said carbon tax was a tax on fossil fuels especially those used by motor vehicles and was introduced to reduce the emission of carbon dioxide.

Mr Tikolevu said the bus and fishing industry, and inter-island vessels were exempt from the two cents per litre increase.

"This is to ensure tax does not place a burden on the Transport Ministry used by the public at large," he said.

"While undertaking all those measures, we are trying to compensate for tax and duty rates on all commodities.

"So we need to compensate that and try to reduce rates. We are also encouraging investments, individuals and households to spend more.

"The two cents is there for a purpose so hopefully it can have some impact on our import bill in some way.

"Government cannot only give away but has to be compensated for this tax. The two cents per litre exempted kerosene, white benzene and pre-mix."

Mr Tikolevu said the main objective of the policy was to promote a clean environment and reduce dependence on imported mineral fuels.

In the 2013 Budget announcement, Prime Minister Commodore Voreqe Bainimarama said Fiji would continue to reduce its reliance on fuel imports which had now reached a staggering $1billion a year.

"We cannot control international prices of commodities but to look for alternative energy source," Commodore Bainimarama said.

Britain was the first country to introduce a carbon trading scheme, under which an upper limit is placed on emissions and big emitters were required to hold a pollution permit for every tonne of heat-trapping gas they emit.