The Informer (Monrovia)

Liberia: Commerce Alarms Over 'Black Deal' Gas Selling - Says No Gas Shortage Here

The Ministry of Commerce and Industry has alarmed over what it calls the "unscrupulous business practice" by some petroleum dealers aimed at "creating artificial shortage" of gasoline in the country, and warned punitive measure against any one caught in the unwholesome act.

The Ministry said it has learnt that during the night hours, filling stations around Monrovia supply petroleum products to street sellers outside of the normal commercial procedure. "The consequence of this has been a seemingly artificial shortage," the Ministry said in a release issued Sunday.

The Ministry said there are enough petroleum products on the Liberian market, and send a clear warning to anyone involved in the black deal business to desist to avoid punishment in line with the General Business law of Liberia.

On December 7 the Liberian Petroleum Refining Company supplied a total a total of 117,000 gallons of petroleum products to the mainstream gas stations, and that total supplies as of December 8 was 80,000 gallons, the Ministry said.

The Ministry said consistent with its statutory mandate to regulate and monitor all commercial activities, the ministry will take strong action against violators, assuring the public of constant supplies of petro and all essential commodities during the festive season.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Commerce in collaboration with the International Trade Center (ITC) is expected to hold its second internal dialogue on Liberia's accession to the World Trade Organization (WTO).

The three-day dialogue which kicks off Tuesday will bring together element of the private sector and other relevant bodies and stakeholders to increase their understanding about Liberia's accession process to the WTO.

Day one and two (Dec 11 & 12) are respectively intended for government and private sector representatives while the final day is slated to host a joint session.

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