February 1, 2023

The Editor speaks: Who do they think they are fooling?

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Colin WilsonwebHave you noticed the price of gasoline falling sharply over the last few months in the Cayman Islands?


Did you notice the price of gasoline rising sharply over the last two years in the Cayman Islands?


Isn’t that strange?

Not really.

But the gasoline companies and their retail outlets here think they are fooling us.

Of course we mustn’t according to them compare prices with the USA. Well actually, not when the prices come down.

You see when the price of fuel rises in the US somehow our fuel shipments keep arriving here whilst when the fuel prices lower the fuel ships somehow take weeks, even a month to arrive here.

Isn’t that amazing?

Did you read the gobbledegook uttered by Sol Petroleum’s Alan Neesome as reported in an article the other day by Brent Fuller in the Cayman Compass?

If you didn’t I will repeat it.

“The USA is a macro market with totally different supply logistics, vast fuel resources, huge fuel storage capacity, a network of pipelines from the refineries to the distribution points, and trucking fleets which deliver fuel 24 hours per day, 365 days per year,” said Sol Petroleum’s Alan Neesome. “The USA’s scale of operations provide efficiencies in fuel distribution that Cayman does not obtain as we have much higher unit infrastructural and operational costs which result in higher prices to consumers than in the U.S.”

Mr. Neesome added that Sol Petroleum usually receives fuel shipments about every four weeks and that cargo received may have loaded on the supply ship several weeks before arriving in Cayman. This delay creates a lag in pricing compared to current international prices, he said.

That’s all very well but that is why our fuel prices are higher as a base rate. It does not explain why the % fall in price of fuel isn’t comparable.

As for the last paragraph it doesn’t explain why there is an immediate price change here when the fuel prices go up.

When I queried this before I was told it was just ‘bad luck’ the fuel ship coincided with the price rise when it had refueled just before unloading it here.

I suppose it is our bad luck it takes 4 weeks for the fuel ship to get here with the price just a few cents cheaper than it was.

And is the Cayman Islands Petroleum Inspectorate noting all this?

Or are they being fooled?

I am not fooled but with just two fuel suppliers there is precious little I can do about it.

My electricity bill doesn’t show much change either. But the fuel factor kept going up every month whether the fuel ship arrived or not.

And there is nothing I can do about that either.

Except write editorials.

And maybe I am fooling myself anyone reads them.

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