PAANO NA ANG TRANSPARENCY? Court rules against DOE’s oil price unbundling

rising oil prices

The Mandaluyong Regional Trial Court has released an order halting the Department of Energy (DOE) from implementing its unbundling fuel prices policy.

The fuel price unbundling guidelines state that oil companies must submit a breakdown of computation of the price components with every price changes of petroleum products.

Judge Carlos Valenzuela of Branch 213 granted Petron Corp.’s petition to stop the price unbundling policy of DOE.

“Public respondent, Alfonso G. Cusi, in his capacity as the Secretary of the DOE, is enjoined from implementing and enforcing Department Circular No. DC2019-005-008,” said the court.

“The DOE will abide by the court,” Cusi said when asked by BusinessMirror reporters.

According to the Mandaluyong court, it “again found clear and unmistakable right, which the petitioner was able to establish through evidence, to the provisional relief prayed for, to prevent the public respondent, the Secretary of the DOE, from implementing and enforcing the assailed DC while this court hears the main petition for Declaratory Relief so as not to render the judgment ineffectual.”

It also added that if the DOE policy is to be implemented, Petron might not be able to meet its requirements, which may result in the oil company being subjected to “criminal prosecution and administrative penalties mentioned in the circular for noncompliance with the same.”

DOE has been issued three temporary restraining orders (TRO), stopping the implementation of fuel price unbundling.

The Philippine Institute of Petroleum Inc. (PIP) filed a TRO for DOE’s circular. The collective was composed of Petron Corp., Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corp., Chevron Philippines Inc., PTT Philippines, Total Philippines Corp; and Isla LPG Corp.

Pilipinas Shell filed a separate petition before a Taguig court.