Motorists filling up their vehicles with diesel products will be able to cut their fuel budgets this week by P0.35 per liter; and for those using gasoline, there will be a marginal rollback of P0.10 per liter.
The oil companies also announced price reduction of P0.55 per liter for kerosene products in the new wave of price adjustments. As of press time, the oil firms that already sent notices on their price rollbacks had been Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corporation, Seaoil, Cleanfuel, Chevron and PetroGazz effective on Tuesday (March 9); while their competitor-firms are expected to follow their pricing leads.
This early, however, consumers are already being cautioned that the price cuts may just be temporary; and they may need to brace for fresh round of spikes next week following rally of prices in latter part of trading days last week.
The Philippine oil market is heavily dependent on imports, hence, it is vulnerable to the swing of prices happening internationally.
Global experts have been attributing the spikes in prices last week – which hovered close to US$70 per barrel – to the relatively unchanged production quota of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its ally-producers.
The passage of the US$2.0 trillion stimulus package in the United States is also highly expected to reinforce economic activities as well as boost consumer spending, hence, this may exert added pressure on fuel prices in the coming days and weeks.
The US is the biggest oil consumer in the world, so any increased economic activity on its fold will affect global prices.
In addition, the increasing inoculation of the US population may also bring back their driving season in the forthcoming summer months; and that may trigger incessant wave of fuel price hikes by then.