Many of Trinidad and Tobago’s 170 gas stations will possibly close soon, due to lack of profitability and other issues.
This is the dire prediction coming from Former Chairman of the National Petroleum Company Ltd, Neil Gosine.
In a release sent out on Saturday, Gosine noted that the authorities have been properly informed for several months now about the critical issues facing the gas station industry.
He lamented however, that nothing has been done.
Gosine is calling for the Government, and especially the Minister of Energy, to be held directly responsible for the crisis in which gas station operators now find themselves.
He noted that there have been appeals from the Petroleum Dealers’ Association for a practical profit margin in order to stave off the unavoidable closure of gas stations and retrenchment of more than 2,000 workers, but these appeals have fallen on deaf ears.
He highlighted that each time the retail prices of fuels are increased, gross profits for operators decline, since there is no revision of profit margins.
This leads to a situation he said, in which after payment of salaries and wages to pump attendants, maintenance and other staff, in addition to electricity and other essential costs, petroleum dealers are left without a living wage.
Gosine is calling on Minister Olivierre and the Minister of Finance to intervene now, to assist and save the gas station operators from ruin.