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Escalating Cost of Living and Regional Isolation

The JPP travelled to Caniçal today, to address the topic of production costs and the escalating cost of living, which is now squeezing every last cent out of families and companies.

Against the backdrop of the Fuel Logistics Centre and the Port of Caniçal, the entry zone of almost all goods and services that are consumed on the island, the JPP demanded to know why Madeira is subjected to such high transportation costs, and why there is a lack of regulation of some energy products.

While talking to reporters, JPP, Élvio Sousa stated that:

“Fuel prices continue to rise, and the PSD/CDS Regional Government only listens to the sellers not the people when it comes to the lowering of VAT from 22% to 16%.  Not even the CDS, which before being tied to the government used to speak out against unfairness, however, this is no longer the case and families and businesses are forced to bear the burden of the regional debt.”

“This is our reality: we pay 32 euros for a 13kg bottle of butane gas, while Azoreans pay 18.70 euros for the same bottle. In other words, for a region closer to the mainland, the cost of a bottle is 70% more than in the Azores, and the same goes for fuels which are also more expensive in Madeira.”

“Another real situation is the cost of transporting goods to Madeira is 18% more expensive per kilometre than it is for the Azores. This is the reality that must be known to the delegation of the European Parliament’s Transport and Tourism Committee, and not a handpicked choice to show a parallel reality. MEPs must understand the cost of living in on an island region subject to various monopolies; the situation of the region of the country with the highest poverty rate, the only region of the country that has had the same a maritime operator for 31 years without paying rent for the use of port infrastructure; and an insular region that pays 70% more for gas than the Azoreans.”

Concluding he added, “the Regional Government of Madeira is waiting for the Republic to solve the problems, when it has autonomous tools to release the tax burden on goods and services, or to promote competition and the economy, but it does not!”

Samantha Gannon

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