‘Callous’ oil firms hit for ‘callous’ price hike

A MEMBER of the House of Representatives yesterday criticized oil companies for “raising oil prices while everyone was not looking and being battered by super typhoon ‘Juan.’”

“It is not only callous for oil companies to hike gasoline and kerosene prices for at least the third time this month; it is plain wickedness by oil company executives and their foreign principals to foist their profit margin targets and their price hikes on the Filipino people perennially battered by natural calamities and economic hardship,” Casiño said.

On Tuesday, oil giants Chevron Philippines (formerly Caltex), Shell and Petron increased all their gasoline prices by 50 centavos a liter and kerosene by 25 centavos a liter.

Other oil companies followed suit in the following days.

“This is already too much for motorists, bus and jeepney drivers and the consuming public,” Casiño said.

The lawmaker said all oil firms raised the prices of their products by P1.25 per liter on gasoline and kerosene as well as P1 a liter on diesel last October 12.

A week earlier, gasoline prices were increased by 50 centavos and kerosene and diesel by 25 centavos.

“Summing it up so far, for the month of October, oil companies raised prices of gasoline by P2.25 per liter and kerosene by P1.75 per liter. This is corporate greed par excellence,” Casiño said.

The progressive solon said that “the oil companies’ excuse of international market price movements to hike their prices is worn-out and does not justify any of their price adjustments.”

“When Congress resumes session, we shall push for legislation that will put in regulation of pump prices in place as a step towards providing relief to the public from frequent oil price hikes,” Casiño said. D’Jay Lazaro

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