Wednesday, 5 March 2008

Energy Ministry to consider easing diesel price burden

BANGKOK, March 5 (TNA) – Thailand's Energy Ministry will submit three approaches for reducing diesel fuel prices to the National Energy Policy Committee for consideration next Wednesday.

Speaking after meeting with senior ministry officials, Energy Minister Lt-Gen. Poonpirom Liptapanlop said the ministry would seek committee deliberation on three options to lower diesel prices next week.

The first is to give up the proposed collection of an oil surcharge of 0.50 baht per litre to the Fund for Energy Conservation Promotion to be used to build electric rail routes because it remains unclear which form of funds the government would mobilise to finance construction.

The second measure is to scrap the collection of the oil surcharge of 0.10 baht per litre for the State Oil Fund.

The third is to move money from the Oil Fund to subsidise diesel prices by at least 0.30 baht per litre.

She said the ministry saw a need to propose the changes because oil prices had increased to record high levels. In particular, the diesel prices had now surged to US$110 per barrel. (TNA)-E005