Ministries monitor local fuel prices

Ministries monitor local fuel prices
People buy fuel at a petrol station in Ha Noi. Fuel prices will remain stable to keep the price of goods steady and meet demand after the Tet holiday.

HA NOI (VNS) - The ministries of industry and trade, and finance on Tuesday released a document requiring key fuel dealers to keep retail prices of fuel stable.

The ministries decided the maximum retail prices at VND15,686 (S$1.0) per litre for RON 92 gasoline, VND15,356 ($0.73) per litre for biofuel E5 gasoline, VND15,183 (72 cents) per litre for diesel 0.05S, VND15,623 (74 cents) per litre for kerosene - and VND11,861 (56 cents) per kilogramme for 180CST 3.5S mazut.

The maximum price was released in order to stabilise the country's macro-economy and basic goods in the market, as well customer's comsumption demand after the Lunar New Year (Tet) holiday.

Biofuel sales may surge

The price of E5 biofuel, which is VND320 per litre lower than RON 92 petrol, is expected to boost consumption of the biofuel.

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung, at a recent meeting on fuel prices, agreed to apply a petrol-price stabilisation mechanism to E5, pushing its price lower by VND300-500 compared with RON 92.

The move is also aimed at encouraging the consumption of the biofuel.

The Ministry of Finance will also report to the Government, National Assembly and the National Assembly Standing Committee on the environment protection tax imposed on mineral fuel and biofuels, which is expected to boost consumption of the E5 biofuel.

Since the end of 2014, the E5 biofuel has been sold in seven cities and provinces, including Ha Noi, HCM City, Hai Phong, Da Nang, Can Tho, Quang Ngai and Ba Ria-Vung Tau.

The biofuel is expected to be used widely nationwide by the end of this year. Studies show that the E5 produced in Viet Nam can improve motor power and also lessen the emission of hydrocarbons and carbon monoxide.

According to some fuel enterprises, the application of the gasoline stability mechanism to E5 is far less than that of RON 92 and will make the biofuel more competitive, boosting its consumption in the future.

Tran Dac Xuan, director of Petrolimex Ha Noi, said the output of E5 sold at its 12 stores in Ha Noi is stable, about 25,000 to 26,000 litres per day on average. However, its market share is still lower than others, he stated.

Lower prices of the biofuel will also garner more interest among consumers, thereby stimulating consumption.

However, preferential policies from the State are needed to support enterprises producing the biofuel, Xuan added.

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