HA NOI — Petroleum importers yesterday raised retail fuel prices by an average of VND400-900 (US$0.019-0.043) per litre.
|A petrol station on Nguyen Luong Bang Street in Ha Noi. Petroleum importers in Viet Nam can now adjust prices according to market fluctuations, but the State still controls prices to make sure that the increases are not a burden on consumers. — VNA/VNS Photo The Duyet
Petrolimex, the nation's leading fuel distributor, announced prices of VND22,400 per litre for RON 95 and 21,900 for RON 92. Diesel was set at VND20,800 per litre and kerosene at VND20,650 per litre, while mazut increased to VND18,450. The Sai Gon Petroleum Co Ltd also announced a similar price hike, with petrol products and kerosene prices rising by VND400.
The companies' decision followed approval from the Ministry of Finance, granted after global oil prices had increased for over 11 consecutive days.
Under current regulations of the ministries of Industry and Trade, and Finance aimed at avoiding runaway fuel prices, price adjustments must also be at least 10 days apart, and no single increase can exceed 7 per cent.
Importers were eligible to adjust prices according to market fluctuations, but the State still controlled prices to make sure that these fluctuations did not strongly affect consumers, said the director of the Ministry of Finance's price management department, Nguyen Tien Thoa.
If prices continued to rise, the two ministries could consider measures to control prices and taxes or allow payments from the fuel price stabilisation fund.
Meanwhile, cooking gas distributors yesterday also raised prices by VND52,000 (US$2.50) to an average of VND367,000 ($18) per 12kg canister.
Distributors rasing prices included Sai Gon Petroleum, MT Gas and Pacific Petro, among others.
After a period of falling prices, imported gas has risen to $775 per tonne, $177.50 higher than in early July.
According to the HCM City market watch team, gas prices were prone to fluctuations, but pricing violations were also widespread, so the team intended to tighten inspections in the near future. In July, the team inspected 22 gas shops and agents, and 14 were found to have violated regulations by illegally extracting gas from cannisters and falsifying weights. — VNS