Formosa Petrochemical announces fuel price hike next week

Formosa Petrochemical Corp. (????), a privately owned fuel supplier, said Saturday that it will raise its domestic gasoline and diesel prices next week in reflection of a rebound in international crude oil prices.

Since a meeting among the members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) reached a preliminary agreement on a production cut earlier this week, international crude oil prices have bounced back, prompting Formosa Petrochemical to hike domestic fuel prices.

Starting from 1 a.m. Monday, domestic gasoline and diesel prices at Formosa Petrochemical gas stations will rise by NT$0.1 (US$0.003) per liter.

In a meeting held Sept. 28, the OPEC members caught the market off-guard by announcing an output cut by 700.000 barrels per day to a range of 32.5 million barrels to 33 million barrels.

Saudi Arabia, the world's largest oil producer, is expected to lower production by 350,000 barrels a day under the tentative agreement. The accord marks the first output cut in eight years among the OPEC members. Non-OPEC members are expected to make similar production reductions, which has eased concerns over a supply glut in the global oil market.

The production cut boosted international crude oil prices by more than 5 percent that day, and the rebound continued for the rest of the week.

But the strength of the Taiwan dollar, which was boosted by foreign fund inflows, helped local oil suppliers offset to some extent the impact resulting from more expensive international crude oil prices in the week, market sources.

After the adjustment, fuel prices at Formosa Petrochemical gas stations islandwide will rise to NT$19.9 per liter for super diesel, NT$22.6 per liter for 92 octane unleaded, NT$24.1 per liter for 95 unleaded and NT$26.4 per liter for 98 unleaded.

The company's major competitor, state-owned CPC Corp., Taiwan (??), is expected to announce similar price adjustments at noon Sunday, and its cut will become effective at midnight.

In a statement released Saturday, CPC said that it will raise liquefied natural gas (LNG) prices by NT$1.9 per kilogram, starting from Sunday, due to a rise in natural gas prices.

CPC said that the price of LNG for vehicle use in the domestic market will also rise by NT$1 per liter, as demand is on the rise, with a peak consumption season approaching.

In addition, propane and butane prices have been raised by NT$1.9 per kilogram, CPC said.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel