The Georgian Economy Ministry expects a potential decrease in fuel prices through importation of the product purchased at cheaper rates, Minister Levan Davitashvili said on Monday.
The Government’s “constant communication” with importers, and work on insurance mechanisms to avoid rising fuel prices, were highlighted by Davitashvili among measures against the recent increase in fuel costs in the country.
The Minister said authorities were not considering abolishing the fuel tax, calling it an “inadequate measure”. Abolition of the tax was among the demands of protests held by citizens in cities across the country on Sunday.
Davitashvili said the effect of the ongoing war in Ukraine meant Georgia was among countries that “paid the price”, adding the Government's task was to make this “less of a problem” for the country’s population.
We must be very careful in approaching such issues, so that the fiscal discipline that has developed in the country is not violated,” he said.
Finance Minister Lasha Khutsishvili also responded to the issue and said budget revenue from fuel excise and VAT exceeded 1.3 billion GEL ($409,350mln/€372,806mln) as of 2022, therefore the state could not reduce the related taxes, as it amounted to between 8-9 percent of budget revenues.
The protests were held yesterday in several cities of the country where demonstrators protested the rising fuel prices, demanded abolition of excise tax on fuel, and called for a transfer of value-added tax to a floating mode. The protests ended with 20 arrests made in Georgia's capital Tbilisi.
The rise in fuel price in Georgia has been linked to the increase in oil prices around the world, as well as in shipping costs in the Black Sea amid the ongoing war in Ukraine.