Malawi consumer association demands cooking oil producers to reduce prices

The Consumer Association of Malawi (CAMA) has demanded cooking oil refiners to reduce prices of cooking oil following the removal of Value Added Tax on the product.

This has been stated in a press statement that has been signed by CAMA’s Executive Director John Kapito.

Kapito noted that for close to two years, the cooking oil producers in the country informed and advised Government and Consumers that prices of cooking oil went up in the country as a result of the introduction of Value Added Tax (VAT).

He added that consumers are expecting the cooking oil producers to immediately take necessary steps to reciprocate what Government has done by removing the VAT on cooking oil which was the only singled contributing variable that the industry said was the reason for the current high prices of cooking oil in the country.

“Consumers will not accept any other reasons for failure to reduce prices. Consumers want to see the benefits after removal of VAT on cooking oils.  The cooking oil refining companies went all over lobbied especially the media, ordinary Malawians including Government officials that the prices of Cooking Oil have gone up as a result of the introduction of VAT on cooking oil, and indeed this was believed by the many consumers in the country.

“We are happy that Government has decided to remove the VAT and with that we are expecting to see huge reductions on Cooking Oil prices” reads part of the statement.

In early 2020, a two litre bottle of cooking oil in Malawi was being sold at about K2000.  The Tonse Alliance after coming into power in July, 2020 introduced VAT on cooking oil in the 2020/21 budget.

This led to an increase in prices which have since tripled as a two litre bottle of cooking oil is now at about K6000.

In the 2022-23 budget presented in Parliament last month, Government removed the VAT on cooking oil. The tax measure will be effective on 1st April 2022 once relevant bills have been passed in Parliament.