OLA Energy lobbies government to reduce cost of lubricant business

OLA Energy says that raw materials for the manufacture of lubricants- base oils and additives are charged an import duty of 10% while in other African markets the materials are duty-free. The only levies charged are on the finished product when sold in local markets or exported.

According to OLA Energy, Global Chief Executive Officer, Mazin Binramadan, “It has been very difficult and expensive to export lubricants to other countries like Ethiopia, Congo, Tanzania, Malawi, Zambia and Zimbabwe due to stiff competition from other countries namely Egypt, India, United Arab Emirates and South Africa who benefit from duty free manufacturing and other subsidies.

“If base oils and additives are made duty free this will enable Kenya to become more competitive in domestic markets and subsequently reduce the incentive for smuggling products into the country. Ethiopia for example, despite the close proximity to Kenya imports these items from Morocco due to our high costs,” noted Binramadan.

“A vibrant lubricant industry means more job creation not only in the lubricant manufacturing industry but also in package manufacturing -plastics and steel containers, cartons and labels. Removal of duty on base oils and additives will help other sectors of the economy as lubricants are intermediate products in transportation, construction and manufacturing industries,” added Onyonyi.

OLA Energy is currently undertaking a change of its retail visual identity across the currently. The process which kicked off last year involves changing brand livery from Oil Libya to OLA energy across its retail outlets in Kenya and Africa.