The adverse impact of the COVID-19 pandemic and the consecutive typhoons that displaced thousands and caused huge damages to properties and lives are still far over, and yet here comes another bad news for Filipino consumers: massive hikes in prices of petroleum products at the pumps next week.
Based on the initial calculation of the oil companies, diesel prices will be increased by as much as P1.45 to P1.55 per liter, while gasoline prices will also go up by substantial P1.15 to P1.25 per liter.
The gradual re-opening of travel and the tourism sector will also be hit hurriedly as the price of kerosene, which is the base for aviation fuel, is anticipated to climb by P1.25 to P1.35 per liter.
The oil companies will implement the upward price adjustments on Tuesday (November 17), as anchored on the established practice of industry players in the downstream oil sector.
For typhoon-battered Philippines, next week’s price adjustments will just add up to the anxieties of consumers who have been thoughtfully hoping for better days ahead as the Christmas season approaches.
With most oil companies already importing finished products, the key pricing reference applied in weekly price adjustments at the domestic pumps is the Mean of Platts Singapore (MOPS).
As culled from the monitoring of the Department of Energy (DOE), there is still a net decrease in the cost of petroleum products if reckoned from all adjustments in the past 11 months – at the scale of P5.67 per liter for gasoline; P10.91 per liter for diesel; and P13.89 per liter for kerosene.
It was noted that prices in the world market had risen last week as many economies are now manifesting stronger-than-expected signs of recovery.
In the United States, in particular, it reported its highest manufacturing PMI (or the purchasing managers’ index which reflects prevailing direction of economic trends) in October, which was considered as the highest since November 2018; although there were still concerns raised that its overall economic growth will contract in the fourth quarter.
For the Asian oil market, it was indicated that there have been vigorous signs for rebound because of the high demand of refiners, primarily for those in India and China.
Nevertheless, market experts cautioned that refining margins are still wobbling; and there are anticipations that Libya may still inject more oil into markets that in turn could affect supply-demand fundamentals in forthcoming trading days and weeks.