Shell, Caltex expand gas station network

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Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corporation (PSPC) eyes to open 50 to 70 new service stations this year, it said in a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE).

“SHLPH has been taking steps to reshape its portfolio for a resilient, adaptive, and future-ready organization. SHLPH currently has over a thousand retail sites nationwide, and it intends to continuously grow it,” the disclosure read. SHLPH is PSPC’s trading symbol in the PSE.

The country’s second-largest oil firm has over 1,000 retail outlets nationwide as of the end of 2020, said Cesar Romero, PSPC President and CEO and concurrent Country Chairman of the Shell companies in the Philippines.

Romero also recently announced the launch of Shell Energy Philippines (SEPH), which¬†focuses on delivering cleaner, flexible, and innovative energy solutions to commercial and industrial customers. The Department of Energy recently said that it is reviewing SEPH’s notice to proceed application to build a liquefied natural gas facility in Batangas.

PSPC also recently permanently closed its oil refinery in Tabangao, Batangas City, as it was deemed unprofitable, while Shell Philippines Exploration B.V. is selling its 45% stake in the Malampaya gas-to-power project off the coast of Palawan.

Chevron Philippines, Inc. (CPI), meanwhile, said it has opened a total of 30 new Caltex gas stations in 2020, 11 of them in November and December. Some of the new stations are located in Lipa City, Batangas; Olongapo City; and Bataan.

In a statement, the company said this was its way of responding to higher fuel demand from an improving economy, which the COVID-19 pandemic hit. CPI Country Chairman and General Manager Billy Liu hopes to sustain the growth of the company’s retail network in 2021.

Caltex, a longtime part of the country’s “Big 3” oil firms, was edged out by Dennis Uy’s Phoenix Petroleum as the third-largest fuel player last year.