More than 9,000 gallons of gasoline and diesel have been seized for this year alone, according to the Guyana Energy Agency (GEA), which has also recorded seven discoveries of illegal fuel so far for 2018.
Those discoveries have led to two convictions already, while three matters remain ongoing, GEA related in a statement yesterday.
The Legal and Licensing Division of the GEA, which holds the mandate to monitor the performance of the energy sector, particularly in relation to the production, importation, distribution and utilisation of petroleum and petroleum products, and which is guided by the Petroleum and Petroleum Products Regulations 2014, summarised in a release yesterday its accomplishments in regard to forwarding that mandate.
The release stated that for the year of 2018, GEA’s inspectors visited 3,192 sites, where they collected 8,339 fuel samples, within this first quarter. Those figures, it was stated, represent 22% and 24% of GEA’s annual target, respectively.
It was further related that last year, GEA visited 12,882 sites and collected 33,891 samples, which uncovered 29 instances of illegal fuel possession and led to the seizure of over 11,000 gallons of illegal gasoline and diesel.
GEA managed six convictions for 2017, however, guided by its legislation, four individuals were allowed to provide compensation amounting to $1,237,000.
At December 31, 2017, the entity had recorded 1,487 valid petroleum and petroleum products licences. Petroleum products, it was noted, include diesel, gasoline, kerosene, aviation fuel, lubricants and LPG (liquefied petroleum gas).
The breakdown of valid licences is provided below:
13 Import and Importing Wholesale Licences for importation of “fuels” i.e. diesel, gasoline, kerosene, and aviation fuel.
22 Import and Importing Wholesale Licences issued for the importation of either lubricants and/or LPG only.
1 Export Licences.
14 Wholesale Licences.
113 Retail Licences: Petrol Filling Stations.
464 Retail Licences: Others: LPG, Kerosene, Lubricants etc.
230 Consumer Installation Licences.
630 Bulk Transportation Carrier Licences.
The statement noted that as GEA publishes a list of all issued licences in the Gazette, the aforementioned statistics form public record.
“The GEA wishes to remind all licence-holders in the business of transporting, storing, retail, wholesale or importation of petroleum and petroleum products of their licensing obligations under the Petroleum and Petroleum Products Regulations 2014 and requirements for timely renewal through submission of requisite documentation,” the statement advised.
“The Guyana Energy Agency expresses gratitude to those who continue to co-operate and would like to encourage all persons who may have information relating to fuel smuggling and possession of illegal fuel to contact the Agency at 226-0394 or 629 3391 to assist its efforts in combating smuggling activities,” the release stated.