DOE: “Massive” oil price rollback seen next week


With a historical price increase in oil products last Tuesday, consumers can expect a “massive” rollback next week due to a drop in global crude oil prices, the Department of Energy (DOE) said. 

In a CNN Philippines report, the DOE’s Oil Industry Management Bureau (OIMB) said that the COVID-19 surge in China, as well as Ukraine drifting away from its plan to be a member of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, have caused the dip in oil prices in the world market. 

DOE-OIMB Dir. Rino Abad said that while the department cannot give exact figures yet on the price of global crude oil, he said recent trading would practically wipe out last Tuesday’s huge jump in oil prices come next week. 

As of Thursday morning Manila time, Brent Crude was priced at $98.31 per barrel, while Dubai crude oil stood at $105.76 per barrel. 

Energy Sec. Alfonso Cusi said in a BusinessWorld report that if the trading continues to go between $100-$105, local prices could drop next week by at least Php12 per liter for diesel and Php5/liter for gasoline.

However, independent oil company Cleanfuel did not wait anymore and instead, implemented a price rollback for diesel from Php3-5/liter at selected service stations nationwide.

Meanwhile, Pres. Rodrigo Duterte himself rejected calls to suspend the excise tax on fuel, and instead approved the Department of Finance’s (DOF) proposal to extend the Php200 monthly aid to poor families for a year. 

The DOF had rejected calls to suspend the excise tax on fuel, saying that it could deplete the government’s funds for its COVID-19 pandemic response. 

In a cabinet meeting on Tuesday, Finance Sec. Carlos Dominguez III added that the said tax must be retained as the DOF “already budgeted it for salaries of school teachers, ‘Build, Build, Build’ and other expenses.” 

The DOF  is also currently looking at a Php 20.3 billion “war chest” which could be used for fuel subsidies for the public transport and agricultural sector.