Countries should do away with fuel subsidies: World Bank chief

Countries should do away with fuel subsidies: World Bank chief Davos: Countries should do away with subsidies for fossil fuels to help mitigate the impact of climate change, World Bank Chief Jim Yong Kim Saturday asserted, but felt removing them would be "politically difficult".

He made the comments while discussing ways to tackle climate change issues at the World Economic Forum (WEF) here.

India and many other countries provide subsidies on fossil fuels like diesel and kerosene.

"We should be removing fossil fuel subsidies in every country in the world," the World Bank President said.

Citing the example of Tunisia, Kim said fossil fuel subsidies do not help in protecting the poor.

"The other issue is that we have fossil fuel subsidies. I was just in Tunisia and they are struggling to find a way to limit fossil fuel subsidies. (They said) that fossil fuel subsidies help richer people who drive cars.

"(fossil fuel subsidies) are fundamentally not progressive. We want to protect the poor and the fossil fuel subsidies don't do that... But it is politically very difficult," Kim said.

Noting that there are many, different solutions to deal with climate change, the World Bank chief said they would help countries in finding a way forward.

"Lot of different solutions... What are the big things we can do to tackle (climate change). One thing that we need and everyone has said this for a long time, we need a stable price for carbon and we need to find a way to make a market that works for carbon," he said.

PTI