The Palestinian energy and natural resources authority condemned Israel’s exceptional closure of Karm Abu Salem crossing on Friday in front of the entry of extra fuel quantities in full disregard of its ceaseless efforts and demands.
The energy authority announced, in a press statement, that “due to the closure of the crossing on Friday, one of Gaza power plant’s generators was unfortunately shut down temporarily. Only one generator is left working which is due to the lack of enough fuel”.
This was coincided with the breakdown of the Egyptian lines for a few days which affected the current power distribution schedules.
The authority renewed its appeals to the concerned authorities for opening the crossing and entering extra quantities of fuel as well as allowing postpaid prices in order not to aggravate the crisis.
The authority also asked the public to cooperate with the teams of the power distribution company in order to overcome the dilemma and undertook to operate the generator once the crossing is opened and extra fuel is entered.
Earlier in a statement on Thursday, the authority explained the reason of its inability to run the power plant completely by saying that the taxes (Value Added Tax, Blue Tax and other taxes) increase the fuel price leading to shortage at the power plant.
The statement showed some details on the power plant’s fuel costs and taxes over the year 2016. 78 million liters were imported with a total cost estimated at 259 million shekels. 135 million shekels of which were spent on different taxes on fuel prices after the partial exemption of the Blue tax.
This means that the taxes reached 52% out of the total fuel cost with the partial exemption of the Blue tax. The authority pointed out that if all taxes are cancelled, the power plant will be fully operated.
For 10 years, the Gaza Strip has been suffering from a massive electricity crisis especially in the past days leaving Gazans forced to live according to a daily distribution table including 4 hours of electricity connection and 12 hours of electricity cut.
(Source / 06.01.2017)