JIS News

Minister of Commerce, Science and Technology, Phillip Paulwell has stressed that the Government was determined to resolve the dispute between local petroleum marketing companies and dealers.
He said this would be done not by way of legislation, but by having “both sides accept that each side has its interests and work to see how we preserve the fundamental of those interests but all at times respect the others’ interests”.
Minister Paulwell’s comments came on Friday (October 15) during his address at the official opening of the Total Jamaica gas station at National Heroes Circle in Kingston.
The Minister said over the last two years, his Ministry had conducted meaningful dialogue with all the respective players in the petroleum industry and as such, “we are approaching the point and it is our intention to promulgate a new Code of Conduct that will govern the relationship between marketing companies and dealers, that will signal a new attitude to both sides”.
He stated that the introduction of the Code was relevant, as both marketing companies and dealers were “very important to sector viability as well as economic viability of our country”.
The Code of Conduct, the Minster explained, would have among its objectives, “the length of contract.both sides have agreed that they are going to move away from a one-year to a three-year contract so there is greater security of tenure”.
Furthermore, the Code will include the establishment of conduct based on international best practices, and sensitive to local operating conditions, which will outline the minimum standards for the commercial arrangements between the marketing companies and dealers. The Code will also promote and create conditions for commercial viability and for the general protection of consumers and investors alike.
The opening of the Total gas station marks the entry of the French-based multinational energy company into the country’s business landscape. Total has bought and assumed operations of the 21 National gas stations across the island. Renovation of all the stations is to be done by 2005.

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