…some operators illegally selling fuel wholesale
By Leonard Gildarie
A number of gas station operators, contracted to buy from the Guyana Oil Company (GuyOil), have expressed unhappiness over limitations to their quotas by the state-owned entity.
Additionally, there are complaints that the government company is forcing them to buy large quantities of Castrol oil products, before the stations could receive their quotas.
However, GuyOil has since said that a number of operators have been illegally selling the fuel, allowing their pumps to run dry.
As world prices remain at their highest since the 2007-2008 crisis, Government through GuyOil has been seeking to keep gas below the $1,000 per gallon mark.
While gas stations of GuyOil are retailing gasoline at $980 (US$4.90) a gallon, the privately-owned ones were up to yesterday hovering around $1100 (US$5.50).
GuyOil believes that with even smuggled fuel more expensive than what it is selling to those operators for, a few unscrupulous business persons are taking advantage selling back to other private operators.
Several GuyOil operators last week claimed that the company was unwilling to give them more gas, preferring instead to sell it through their pumps.
“We have two issues here. The first is that there are increasing instances that we are running out of gas because they limiting us. Secondly, they want us to buy more than $100,000 of Castrol products every month before they give us any gas. How is this fair? We cannot afford to close for one or two days.”
Additionally, a major prohibitive factor is that service stations being supplied by GuyOil are forbidden by contract to buy elsewhere.
But GuyOil’s Managing Director, Badri Persaud, has another story.
Under contract, the operators are mandated to buy the Castrol products once they are taking gas from the state-owned company.
“What we found is that they stock oil from other companies like Shell and so on. Secondly, there are cases where particular operators took gas from us and instead of selling it from their pumps would have trucks pulling up taking it away.”
GuyOil has measures in place to determine how much gas has been sold through a particular pump.
According to Persaud, GuyOil has a system in place, based on sales and other trends to determine how much gas goes to a particular operator.
But operators are saying that because GuyOil gas is cheaper, consumers have been rushing their pumps to cash in.
“This obviously puts a strain on us because we are now moving more volumes,” one operator complained.
The operators called for Government to consider having GuyOil bring more gas into Guyana, if it is a question of quotas.
“I know at least one gas station within the city that pulled out of the arrangement with GuyOil over the past month because of unsteady supply and because of this unfair quota,” a long time gas station operator said.
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