Solon seeks regulatory framework for LPGs

A NEOPHYTE lawmaker is batting for the establishment of a regulatory framework in the trade of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) by setting standards and requirements for the LPG, auto-LPG, LPG containers and LPG cylinder industries, with the end goal of promoting general welfare.

Rep. Susan Yap (2nd District, Tarlac), principal author of House Bill 1418, said the bill will be able to contain the risks associated with sub-standard LPG products, which pose serious threats to society.

“The LPG industry has already marked a significant portion in the market due to its high demand.  Operating under a deregulated downstream oil industry structure, it allows its market participants to engage in unfair and unsafe trade practices, hurting consumers and to a large extent, causing negative externalities to society,” Yap said.

Under the bill, otherwise known as the “LPG Industry Regulation and Safety Act of 2010,” the Department of Energy (DOE) is tasked to supervise and monitor the LPG industry and its participants to ensure compliance with national product quality, environmental and worker safety and consumer welfare standards.

The Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) together with local government units (LGUs) will enforce stricter guidelines in the sale requalification, distribution and repair of LPG cylinders.

The bill requires LPG cylinder or container manufacturers, requalifiers, repairers and scrapping centers to secure a license from the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI)

before one can commence business operations.

Under the measure, industry participants are required to comply with the quality standards established by the DOE for the LPG industry consistent with the PNS formulated by the DTI in order to reduce safety risks and operational hazards and promote the use of environmentally safe and worker-benign technologies and processes.

The bill imposes a fine of P5 million for an individual and P10 million for a corporation who engages in business without securing a Standard Compliance Certificate from the DOE shall be fined with.

A person who engages in the business of manufacturing cylinder or of re-qualifying, repairing or scrapping LPG cylinders without a certificate of accreditation from the DTI shall be fined with P5 million for an individual and P10 million for a corporation.

The bill also penalizes obstruction of inspection, illegal storage, failure to comply with product standards, adulteration, under-filling, unauthorized trading of LPG cylinders, tampering of these cylinders, and importation of used or second-hand LPG cylinders, sale or distribution to non-complying persons or entities and pilferage of LPG. D’Jay Lazaro

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