Alberta Premier Jason Kenney has announced the province will be dropping its provincial fuel tax to help ease record-high gas prices.
Kenney attributed the uncertainty of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the Liberal government’s carbon tax hike of 3 cents per litre on April 1 as reasons for the tax removal.
“These costs will drive up the cost of groceries. Just when life is starting to get back to normal, people are worried,” said Kenney.
“This relief is based on a sliding scale for the price of oil. When the price of oil is over $90 per barrel, the fuel tax will be removed completely. When the price of oil is less than $80 per barrel of WTI, the fuel tax of 13 cents per litre will be in full effect.”
WTI crude oil currently sits just below $120 a barrel Monday afternoon, according to Oilprice.com.
“This massive tax relief is a response to skyrocketing costs at the pump.”
The removal of the provincial fuel tax will drop the price of fuel by 13 cents per litre and will come into effect on April 1. The price adjustment will apply to gasoline and diesel, according to Kenney.
Kenney added the removal of the tax will take a couple of weeks to instate due to gas stations purchasing the fuel at current costs.
The government will review the collection of the fuel tax on a quarterly basis and, if required, consider reinstating collection in stages, based on the average price of West Texas Intermediate (WTI) over a number of weeks, according to a news release.
The government will not start to reinstate collection before July 1.
According to the latest daily pump price survey from Kent Group, gas prices in major cities across Alberta are all above $1.50 per litre.
Regular gas in Edmonton sits at $1.552 per litre, Calgary is at $1.572 per litre, and Lethbridge is $1.563 per litre.
The national average for March 7, 2022 is $1.841 per litre.
Kenney also mentioned a new $150 rebate for electricity bills Albertans received this past winter. More than one million homes, farms and businesses are expected to receive a $50 monthly rebate for three months.