PM inquires into fuel prices

Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung on July 16 asked leaders of finance, industry and trade to explain how they fix retail prices for petrol.

He made the requirement at a meeting with leading officials of the Ministries of Finance, and Industry and Trade in Hanoi.

The PM also asked the two ministries to explain developments and prices of global fuel, price management measures and the use of the petroleum price stabilisation fund - as well as profits for businesses.

According to the two ministries, in the past six months, the world's fuel price has fluctuated. The ministries coordinated efforts to adjust the domestic price in line with the market mechanism, using financial tools to keep the price from spiralling too high.

Since early this year, the two ministries have permitted petrol businesses to adjust retail prices 10 times based on world prices, while also using the oil and gas price stabilization fund.

With the mobilisation of the fund, oil and gas prices only increased slightly by VND338 (US$1.5 cents) per litre instead of VND638 (US$3 cents) per litre in late June, and VND418 per litre (US$1.9 cents) instead of VND918 (US$4.3 cents) per litre in early July.

At the meeting, PM Dung agreed that price management was implemented in line with the Government's decree and use of the fund was public and transparent.

He urged the ministries to closely watch the global price while taking measures in case of a sudden price hike in the world market.

He asked for the strict implementation of price management principles to curb inflation, maintain macro-economic stability, and prevent cross-border fuel smuggling.

Dung also required the two ministries to clarify global oil and gas price developments through the mass media as well as management plans for oil and gas distribution. They were also told to publicise their profits for the sake of transparency. 

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