THE DEPARTMENT of Energy (DoE) has asked oil companies to provide fuel discounts to frontliners and other consumers to offset the additional cost of fuel following rising crude prices and the impact of the public health emergency.
“The rising price of oil in the world market is regrettably beyond our control; however, we as members of the Philippine energy family could help ease some of the financial burdens of our countrymen in our continued battle against the COVID-19 (coronavirus disease 2019),” Energy Secretary Alfonso G. Cusi said in video posted on his Facebook page Wednesday.
“Once again, ako po ay nananawagan sa ating mga kasamahan sa industriya, ang mga oil companies na kung pwede magbigay ng diskwento sa fuel sa ating pong mga frontliners at sa iba po nating mga kababayan sa kahirapan po ng dinaranas natin dahilan sa pandemic, I am calling on the industry… that if able, they grant discounts to frontliners and other users to provide relief from their burdens during the pandemic,” he added.
Mr. Cusi also urged the energy sector to ensure the unhampered delivery of services in areas placed under enhanced community quarantine, including Metro Manila.
On Thursday, the DoE said that global oil demand has risen, resulting in crude oil deficits of 370,000 and 140,000 barrels per day (bpd) in the first and second quarters of 2021, respectively.
“This market sentiment will continue to develop, with projected increasing demand versus ongoing supply restrictions from the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and US sanctions against Iran and Venezuela, which all seen to be the underpinning factors pointing to sustained price increases for the rest of the year,” the department said in a statement.
The US restrictions affect the supply of 2 million bpd from Iran and 700,000 bpd from Venezuela, the availability of which could have helped ease the global supply deficiency, the DoE said.
This week, gasoline, diesel and kerosene prices rose P1.05 per liter, P0.8/L and P0.75/L, respectively, following price adjustments by Seaoil Philippines, PTT Philippines Corp., Caltex Philippines, Pilipinas Shell, Petron Corp. and Phoenix Petroleum Philippines, Inc. — Angelica Y. Yang