Oil Companies Will Soon Be Required To Reveal Pricing Details
A controversial circular requiring oil companies to disclose the details of their price adjustments on petroleum products will be soon implemented by the Department of Energy, in the midst of the pending court decision on the petition filed by oil companies to stop the government’s feat.
The Philippine Institute of Petroleum Inc. (PIP) filed a “Petition for Declaratory Relief with Application for a Temporary Restraining Order and/or Preliminary Injunction” against DOE’s Department Circular No. DC2019-05-0008 before a Makati Regional Trial Court.
Among the members of PIP counts are Chevron Philippines Inc., Isla LPG Corp., Petron Corp., Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corp., PTT Philippines Corp., and Total Philippines Corp.
According to the oil companies, unbundling fuel prices “contravenes the dynamics of a deregulated oil market.”
In a press briefing, Energy Assistant Secretary Roberto Uy said:
“Ganun na nga po ang mangyayari … According to legal procedure, habang hindi pa pa nagdedesisyon ang korete, itutuloy namin.”
(translation: According to legal procedure, while there is no decision from the court yet, we can proceed with the implementation)
The DOE circular mandates oil companies to “unbundle” or provide the DOE with a detailed computation and corresponding explanation and supporting documents on the causes or reasons of the price adjustment. This measure will call for some transparency on the oil companies’ part as they adjust domestic fuel prices on a weekly basis, usually on Tuesday, based on price movements in global markets. This circular also wants the public to see that there is no monopoly or oligopoly or abuse in the oil market.
The DOE official said the circular will take effect either on July 2 or July 4 if the court fails to decide on PIP’s petition.