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New government service fees will not affect Bahrainis, say authorities

The Bahraini government is contemplating ways of increasing government service fees, but said citizens, particularly those with lower incomes, would not be affected.

Cabinet Affairs Minister Mohammed Al Mutawa said the government was forced to raise fees due to financial constraints and in order to ensure services provided are in line  with approved standards, reported Gulf Daily News.

“Bahrainis will not shoulder the financial burden and that’s something we are working to achieve – to clarify we are talking about the average Bahraini, not businessmen,” said Al Mutawa.

The minister spoke at a weekly parliament session yesterday during which MPs approved a proposal that prohibits the government from introducing more fees or increasing existing ones unless they are approved through the new four-year action plan.

“We are committed to the four-year Government Action Plan until the end of 2018 and whatever decision we make will take the public interest into account – we are all here to serve the nation,” he said.

Al Mutawa added Bahrain has the lowest fees imposed on government services in the Gulf.

However, several MPs argued that the government charges which have been adopted have already affected the lives of ordinary Bahrainis.

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