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Bacolod City, PhilippinesWednesday, March 9, 2011
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Oil prices increase
more than P1 a liter‏

 Oil firms raised diesel prices by P1.50 per liter, P1.25 per liter for kerosene and P1 per liter for gasoline effective 6 a.m. yesterday.

Chevron, Pilipinas Shell and Eastern Petroleum said they raised prices "to reflect the movement of international oil prices."

Other oil companies are expected to follow suit.

Oil prices have gone up week-on-week to $129.50 per barrel last week from $123.42 per barrel a week ago for imported diesel.

Imported gasoline also went up to $ 120.74 per barrel from around $ 116.8 per barrel.

The Department of Energy has already directed the oil companies to focus on their own plans as far as their supply inventories are concerned.

The department issued circular 2011-03-0002 requiring each oil firm to maintain a minimum in-country inventory of 15 days.

The country’s daily fuel consumption is estimated at about 300,000 barrels or 48 million liters. This translates to about P1.6 billion per day at $ 120 per barrel and exchange rate of P44 per barrel.

Energy Secretary Jose Rene Almendras said among the oil firms, Petron is veering away from Middle East countries and is in talks with Russia to partly secure its oil requirements.

"Russia is more than willing to sell oil to us. Petron is shifting some of its supply requirements from Saudi to Russia," he said.

The government also issued Administrative Order No. 6, which called for the formation of the Inter-Agency Energy Contingency Committee.

The committee, which will be chaired by Almendras, will undertake the evaluation and enhancement of the current contingency plan. It will be participated in by representatives from various departments.*PNA

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