Today’s Editorial October 03: Time to cut cost of petrol

Government leaders asked for and were given a petroleum study.

Now we’re waiting to see what they’ll do with it.

The study shows what most of us have long suspected: Cayman has high prices and low taxes on fuel.

We really didn’t need a survey to tell us that; it is knowledge gained every time we pull into a gasoline station and fill up.

We hope that once Government makes the report public we’ll be able to find out just how much gasoline is being marked up at the pump.

Paying more than US$5 for a gallon of gas is absurd, especially when considering it’s twice the cost of gasoline in the United States. If the difference between cost and selling price were mainly taxes going toward the betterment of the country, similar to the way it works in many other jurisdictions in the world, maybe we could stomach the high prices.

But that’s not the case here.

We certainly don’t begrudge any business owner a profit, but making an unreasonable profit on the backs of a country’s citizens is shameful.

It’s time for Government to step in and do more than just make station owners post signs saying how much their gas costs.

Some station owners didn’t like the idea of the signs, saying drivers would shop for the best prices and put some stations out of business.

That hasn’t happened.

Most people are creatures of habit and buy their petrol from specific stations.

And gasoline costs aren’t just affecting those who pump petrol into their vehicles.

The price of gasoline is included in every good and service we consume in the Cayman Islands. As the price of petroleum increases, so do the prices of those goods and services.

The cost of living is extremely high in the Cayman Islands, and people are struggling to make ends meet.

The high price of gasoline makes it even worse.

We’ve been listening to Government pay lip service to the cost of living issue in the Cayman Islands for almost two years.

With some of the results of the fuel study now public, we think it’s time for less talk and more action.