Legislators fault proposed 2024/2025 CNG levy

DODOMA: SOME Members of Parliament yesterday challenged the government’s plans to extend fuel levy to Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) used in motor vehicles as retrogressive in promoting the use of natural gas which is expected to lower cost and protect environment.

In their contribution to the government’s budget for 2024/2025 financial year, the MPs proposed that instead of extending fuel tax on CNG use on motor vehicles the government should provide incentives to promote the use of natural gas.

“I was shocked to hear plans to extend fuel levy to CNG of 382/- per kilogramme. People have been motivated to convert their vehicles to run on CNG. This means we should provide incentives including subsidies,” said Grace Tendega (Special Seats, Chadema).

She said use of CNG on motor vehicles brings relief to motorists as it is less expensive compared to petrol or diesel.

According to her, promotion of CNG use on motor vehicles makes economic sense, because it has potential of lowering the use of petrol and diesel which will help the nation save her foreign resources used to import fuel.

“The Finance Minister, Mr Mwigulu Nchemba should tell us why he plans to extend fuel levy to CNG use on motor vehicles,” said the special seats lawmaker.

A CCM Member of Parliament for Mpendae Constituency in Zanzibar, Toufiq Turky said he was surprised by the government thinking of charging tax on CNG.

He said the government must come up with incentives to promote CNG use at this time, when importation of fuel is becoming more expensive due to the war in Ukraine.

“We have the resources, let’s promote it through incentives to the users, the government must come up with a plan on how to encourage people to focus on CNG use instead of imposing tax on it,” said Mr Turky.

He said the government should have also invested more on CNG stations to increase their number from the current three all located in Dar es Salaam.

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He said: “I would like to advise the government to construct more CNG stations or invite investors in the area; this is the way to go.”

Another legislator, Anatropia Theonest (Special Seats, Chadema) said plans to extend fuel levy on CNG used in motor vehicles was unacceptable since that goes against strategies to bring relief to motorists and efforts to discourage use of fossil fuel.

We don’t agree on plans to extend fuel levy on CNG for motor vehicles,” said the legislator, noting that the plan would demotivate people from converting their motor vehicles from fuel and diesel engines to run on natural gas.

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