Lower fuel prices should translate into cheaper goods

Due to decreasing fuel prices on the world market, the government has announced a reduction on petrol and gas oil prices by 4.761 percent starting Monday, October 6. This directly translates into pump prices for petrol and diesel going from the current Frw924 to Frw880.

Due to decreasing fuel prices on the world market, the government has announced a reduction on petrol and gas oil prices by 4.761 percent starting Monday, October 6. This directly translates into pump prices for petrol and diesel going from the current Frw924 to Frw880.

This is good news for consumers, because reduced fuel costs may mean reduced costs for consumer goods as well. It is possible that market prices may take a while to adjust to this positive development, but adjust they should, or they should be helped to.

The government heavily subsidises fuel – as high as 100 percent on diesel and 77 percent on petrol in the last four months – so it has the moral and economic mandate to regulate some prices for basic items like transport and essential food items, so that its population is not unduly exposed to unfair business practices of sharp and grasping middle men.

One of the things most appreciated about this government is its fair and transparent way of dealing with its citizens. A government that is bent on maximising returns and boosting its national coffers in the short run, would just keep quiet about the decreased prices, and let the citizens suffer the heavy cost without getting respite.

A survey around the regional market will show unchanged cost trends despite lower fuel costs; and for being sensitive to development and having a genuine wish for a lower cost of living for its citizens we applaud this government action.

Having such a sensitive feel for the economy is essential in development, for the market cannot be left to take care of itself entirely without any measures of control; it is this that has brought the American economy, and thence the world, to grief – a complete faith in the financial market to take care of itself without close regulation.

Rwanda is just coming out of the bottom of the ditch; that is why it is desirous of keeping a finger closely on the pulse of business finance, thus shielding its citizens from the rough and tumble of fickle world markets which would put most necessities out of reach of the ordinary citizen without such subsidies.  

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