ERC introduces kit to nab adulterated fuel

September 11, 2015
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The Retailer Self-Test Kit is aimed at boosting the commission's efforts in fighting and eliminating fuel adulteration in the country/CFM
The Retailer Self-Test Kit is aimed at boosting the commission’s efforts in fighting and eliminating fuel adulteration in the country/CFM
NAIROBI, Kenya, Sep 11- The Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) has launched a new kit to which will be used to test the purity of petroleum products upon delivery at fuel stations.

The Retailer Self-Test Kit is aimed at boosting the commission’s efforts in fighting and eliminating fuel adulteration in the country.

ERC’s Economic Regulations Director Frederick Nyang has now called on all retailers to get and start using the new device before selling the product to motorists.

“We are glad to be introducing this simple and effective innovations to assist retailers who have been in the past caught with marked motor fuels. Some of them are victims of rogue transporters who engage in diversion of export product and adulterated motor fuels,” Nyang said.

The Retailer Self-Test Kit uses technology known as the lateral flow which is easy to use hence reducing the time and cost of monitoring and testing of petroleum products.

Nyang says ERC has adopted the new technology with the support of the Kenya Bureau of Standards (KEBS) and the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA).

The commission has contracted SGS Kenya an inspection, verification, testing and certification firm to supply the kits which will go for Sh1,100 each.

“This kit we are launching today has been requested by the market. We had many queries at stakeholders workshops asking us to provide a mechanism for retailers to test the products that they receive before the off load these products into their tanks,” SGS Kenya Managing Director Albert Stockell said.

Petroleum retailers have in the past requested the government through ERC to introduce taxes on paraffin which is mostly used to adulterate the fuel, something ERC has remained adamant about.

Nyang argues that it would be hard to do so considering the majority of paraffin users are the poor in the society.

“There are so many options we have before looking at introduction of taxes on paraffin and this new solution is one of them,” he explained.

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