Pump price ‘not fair’ says OfReg deputy chair

| 22/07/2020 | 40 Comments
Cayman News Service
OfReg Deputy Board Chair Ronnie Dunn at PAC meeting

(CNS): The deputy chair of OfReg’s board of directors has confirmed that the utilities regulator now has information that indicates the fuel suppliers are not passing on the savings they could to consumers when world prices fall. Ronnie Dunn said a recent survey of pump prices by the fuel team at OfReg showed that rates were “not fair” and the regulator could have this issue resolved before the end of this month.

Answering questions when he appeared before the Public Accounts Committee last week, Dunn revealed that the long standing concerns about the time it takes for a drop in global fuel prices to reach the pumps have merit.

“OfReg has information in relation to how the pricing structure is set up,” he said. And while this is sensitive commercial data that cannot be made public, Dunn confirmed that it had raised concerns, noting, “We really don’t believe the level of savings being passed on to the consumers at this time is fair.”

Dunn said OfReg had asked the fuel suppliers to explain and justify why they are not passing on the savings identified by the analysis. However, he said that he understood there would be a resolution to this sometime this month.

The deputy board chair said that the regulator was looking for ways to create more transparency surrounding gas prices without releasing sensitive information. He also spoke about the challenges of balancing the fuel company’s right to generate a “fair profit” and what was defined as a fair margin, while at the same time providing a fair price to consumers without imposing the “nuclear option” of price controls.

See Ronnie Dunn appear before PAC on CIGTV below:

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Category: Business, Retail

Comments (40)

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  1. Anonymous says:

    Welcome to the Cayman Islands plantation, the most successful ‘Shadocracy’ on the planet.

  2. Kathleen Bodden says:

    Do people realize, this affects EVERYTHING on these islands???? Not just the cars you drive, the entire economy. I’ve been screaming about this for years & I get the most asinine responses-one for example- US gal vs. Imperial gal. The US fuel prices are the most heavily taxed commodity in the entire nation & probably the world. When they were paying $1.99US-we were paying $3.99ci (that’s @ $5us). And that’s when they finally dropped the price!

  3. Anonymous says:

    told you before….give me the data and a calculator and i will have the answer if 15 mins…..

  4. Anonymous says:

    even if this is gtrue nothing will come of it…
    this is cayman remember…
    we had tv companies that were stealing international feeds for years from north america and charging customers here a fortune….whatever happened to them?,,,,yes they are stil in operation with sanction ever paid….
    welcome to wonderland

  5. Anonymous says:

    Oh well done. After x years they have successfully identified the problem they were told about in the beginning. We only have to wait another 10 or 20 years and they might identify a solution. Then we will be a few short decades from the solution being implemented! There are people alive today that could potentially see ofreg accomplish something. Imagine the wonder.

  6. Annie says:

    Let’s address the customs nightmare! No media are addressing this, and it is more important than anything except Covid. Businesses are waiting 6 to 10 weeks to clear shipments. Shipments that arrived by courier in one day take months to clear. It is utter insanity. Wtf! Is our government actively trying to destroy small businesses? I think perhaps. Are big players getting their shipments cleared? If so, that is so unfair. Stupid TIN requirements only add to the problems.

    • Anonymous says:

      Thank you for your post. I am still waiting for something that I need urgently and paid for 3-day DHL shipping and it arrived on July 1st.

    • Anonymous says:

      Totally agree!!! Parcels arrive by courier most times by two/three days after ordered, then you have to wait for so long for customs to release it!!! Not good!!!

      • Randy the Rocket Surgeon. says:

        Mr. or Mrs. Manager of customs.

        What we do in private industry when we have increased demand is put more people to work on addressing it before the customer is annoyed and moves over to the competition to get it. I know you don’t have that worry, but please, be effective.

        We are more than 4 months into this Covid change and it was clear quite some time ago you need to change with the times. If your HR processes in Government don’t allow contractors, temps, or whatever then get that fixed. There are many Caymanians that could use a little income.

    • Anonymous says:

      Fedex has had a package on island for me since July 9th, it is two weeks later and they are still saying it is held up within Customs. Do better CIG

    • Anonymous says:

      Yes. Yes they are successfully try to wipe out businesses in the Cayman islands. Gotta give it to them. First successful thing they have done in a long time.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Absolutely disgusting!

  8. Anonymous says:

    I’ve known the Deputy Chair for many years, long before the OfReg entanglement, what I can say is that he is very humble but extremely smart, I know he will push for positive change (no pun intended) let’s see where it goes from here.

  9. Anonymous says:

    I wonder who owns the fuel importer/retail stations. Suspect there is your answer.

  10. Anonymous says:

    The pirates returned with the 1976 Government and never left!!

  11. Anonymous says:

    You need a law that prevents collusion to fix prices. Your merchants do not want one, so there you are.

    • Anonymous says:

      Another private sector board member. Typical private sector response. “Soon come”. I have been waiting 8 weeks on a credit card while I got my trade and business licence and a work permit in 10 days.

      Thank you CIG you are setting the standard for the private sector.

  12. Anonymous says:

    No matter how much you save you still got to pay the government a sales tax of 75 cents.

    • Anonymous says:

      The Government duty was reduced to 25 cents Per gallon several years ago and remains at that amount.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Not that anything will be done about it. That would take work. Honest work. Not CIG work.

  14. Anonymous says:

    It is absolutely stupefying that these guys can talk about their own Board and duties in the third person without any ownership of responsibility for the public service shortcomings over the period they were tasked with oversight. Their purpose on the Board is not simply to fist-fight and collect remuneration; there ARE other duties and responsibilities! In rotation, every statement of report seems to be universally disqualifying and self-incriminating! Not only are we not buying what they are selling, but we also want our money back.

  15. Anonymous says:

    Finally! After over 4 million dollars for empty offices, global first class flights, boardroom fist fights and more I am FINALLY going to see a 5 cent cheaper gallon of petrol! OfReg… so worth it. Thanks for your tireless efforts OfReg. Thanks.

    • Anonymous says:

      I hope something is done about gas prices on the Brac, where duties is only 12 .5 cents to government . OFREG PLEASE DO SOMETHING TO HELP THE BRAC PEOPLES. Remember we gets the gas by the same ship that brings the gas to Grand

      • Anonymous says:

        just ask them to explain gas prices especially in usa under 1.90US. how come cayman charges almost the same as when prices were higher. someone lining their pockets and getting away with it.

        • Tom says:

          We have to pay the shipping costs also USA use million of gallon a day while in Cayman only use about 250,000 gallon a month!

      • Anonymous says:

        Agreed! The price of fuel on the Brac is shocking.

  16. Anonymous says:

    If anyone thinks that the machinations of the government is in place to help the people, then you should just end it now.

    I have never in all my years known of a more dishonest, corrupt, thieving, lying government as the one that exists in the Cayman Islands (Paradise by the way) today.

    Martyn Roper needs to get off his bloody Twitter and roll his damned sleeves up and sort out this shit.

    Sorry to trouble you Martyn. Hope the militia is coming on well?

  17. Anonymous says:

    And how much is it costing us for this information from Ofreg that is commonn knowlege

  18. Riggemeration says:

    There’s another potential punch up coming. Amazing is it not that now these stooges are on the hot seat there’s promise of change. Don’t hold your breath. After this PAC roasting things will soon return to “bidnizz as usual” at OfRig (Office of Riggemeration)

    • Anonymous says:

      So oil prices fall in March to a very low point, there is an accepted 6 week lag time for new fuel to show up on Island and make it through the distribution, then you expect to let the market react to lower prices. They don’t.

      so you investigate to see why, and find out that the margins have become inflated.

      At what point does OfReg start walking into Peanut or Barcam or Ozzies station and starting changing the numbers in the cash register? These are people’s private businesses, the regulator cannot simply jump in and change the price at which they sell their products based on the whims and fancies of every disgruntled consumer. You have to consult and show due process. That is simply how the system works. This is not a communist state

      • Anonymous says:

        No it’s a state once frequented by pirates on the high seas. Now the pirates have since setup shop on land.

      • Anonymous says:

        Where you come from?

        Sounds like the rubbish heap of “reap and plunder” robber baron freaks.

        Petrol is a public good and there should be no secrets in this regards.

        Commercial confidentiality of how these prices are “fixed” should not even be mentioned!

  19. Anonymous says:

    Of course they don’t pass on any cost savings. They are a cartel that conspires among themselves to fix the prices. Duty is charged per gallon, not per dollar, and so the prices can remain hidden. In developed countries it is illegal for competitors to get together and agree on prices. Not in Cayman.

  20. Anonymous says:

    Why is it that OfReg only do something about any matter when there is a public uproar.

    Do your jobs daily,weekly,monthly and yearly to protect the rights of us,the consumers, because that is why you all get paid those fat pay cheques!!!@

  21. Rick says:

    Too little, too late! Why did it take public outcry and the actions of MLAs to get this response? This is what they are paid to do.

  22. Anonymous says:

    So, just curious, is Mr. Dunn the same OfReg Deputy Chairman who Chairman Pierson is alleged to have challenged to fisticuffs in the boardroom?

    I’ve worked with Mr. Dunn as a Government advisor to the entity with which I worked and I found him to be extremely knowledgeable, professionally and personally well presented and indeed, most helpful in advising on resolution of complex fiscal matters. From my experience, my opinion is that he would be a definite asset to OfReg’s Board and any branch of the public sector with which he associates. I wonder really how much “pull” he has at OfReg to get real results and benefits to the public?

    Thus my point, he doesn’t strike me as a boardroom “antagonist”. Just saying.

  23. Anonymous says:

    One wonders if PAC had not called them to task would OFREG have had a solution by the end of this month. How convenient.

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