DOE expects more fuel price increases in the coming weeks

DOE expects more fuel price increases in the coming weeks
Motorists stock up on fuel before midnight of June 7 as prices are set go up.
Photo by STAR / Walter Bollozos

MANILA, Philippines — Consumers and motorists will likely have to brace for more rounds of fuel price increases in the coming weeks, according to an Energy department official. 

Earlier this week, local oil companies announced price increases of P2.7 per liter for gas, P6.55 per liter for diesel and P5.45 per liter for kerosene. 

"Tuloy tuloy na pagtaas ay may expectation po tayo na mangyayari at mangyayari sa mga susunod ng weeks. Wala po tayong nakikitang event — sana may dumating — na siyang mag-ooffset nung push nitong mga event na 'to na tuloy tuloy na nagiincrease ng ating price," Department of Energy Oil Industry Management Bureau Director Rino Abad said in an interview on GMA Network's Unang Balita on Wednesday. 

(We expect that there will be a continuous increase in the coming weeks. We don't see any event- we hope that there will be one- which will offset the increase in prices.)

Some factors that will contribute to the surge in demand are: The ongoing war waged by Russia against Ukraine, the European Union ban on Russian oil imports, and the summer season in various countries in the Northern hemisphere.

Abad explained that the lockdown in China's financial hub Shanghai as part of the country's efforts to curb COVID-19 also contributed to the fuel price rollbacks in the past weeks. 

Sentiments and speculations trigger price adjustments in the global oil market, which the Philippines is heavily reliant on for its supply. 

WATCH: Why is oil so expensive these days?

Palawan gas and diesel prices

Asked about the high gas and diesel prices in Palawan which supposedly already reached P100 per liter, Abad said oil companies typically charge P6 to P8 higher for fuel sold in the island. This has already been taking place even before the price surges, citing the transport costs and the lack of import terminals in the area.

"As usual, hindi po nageexplain itong mga oil companies pero ang tingin natin 'yung around kalahati niyan sa P8 'yung kwatro to five pesos ay sobra talaga iyan. Kung maibababa sana, at least malapit din sila sa Metro Manila na price," Abad said. 

("As usual, oil companies are not explaining why, but we see that the P8 is overpriced by P4 or P5. If it can be brought down, the prices will be close to Metro Manila's prices.")

An industry source earlier told Philstar.com that a liter of gas now costs up to P82, while a liter of diesel has hit up to P85, this month. 

Fuel prices have been rising since the start of the year, with the DOE citing tight supply in the global market. The continuous price hikes prompted the Philippine government to disburse subsidies to the transportation, agriculture and fisheries sector, which are among the most affected. — Angelica Y. Yang

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