Press Release
December 11, 2008


Oil companies are acting like "Scrooges" this Christmas, Liberal President Senator Mar Roxas said today, after their refusal to cut their prevailingly high pump prices and their refusal to reveal their computations to the public.

"Mga walang mga puso itong mga kumpanyang langis, na nagpapahirap sa ating mga mamamayan kahit sa Pasko. Hindi nila maipaliwanag ang kanilang pagsingil nang sobra-sobra, at hindi tayo tinutulungan ng Department of Energy dito (These oil companies are heartless and making life hard for our people this Christmas. They could not even explain their excessive charges, and we are not helped by the Department of Energy)," he said.

"May mas tamang kalkulasyon raw ang mga kumpanyang ito. Bakit hindi na nila ipakita? Huwag nang hintayin na itawag ko sila sa Senado, basta maisapubliko na (These companies supposedly a more accurate calculation. Why don't they show it? They could make this public, and need not wait to be called to the Senate)," he said.

  (PhP/US$) MOPS Price Pump Price  MOPS Price Pump Price
    ($/Bbl)  Ave. Month ($/Bbl) Ave. Month
      (Php/L)   (Php/L)
July 2008 (Peak)  44.93 168.01 55.99 135.27 60.46
November 2008 49.18 73.77 40.47 48.41 43.81
December 2008 49.14 66.40 35.94 42.62 35.96

% Change in price

9.4% (60.5%) (35.8%) (68.5%) (40.5%)

  The Ilonggo senator has calculated the price of Mean of Platts Singapore (MOPS) oil prices and imputing other costs such as the foreign exchange rate, transport costs, the 3% tariff and 12% VAT, and found that prices have gone down 51.1% for diesel and 59.1% for unleaded gasoline since July, when oil was at its peak. The present price of P35.94/L diesel and P35.96/L unleaded gasoline, he maintained, is still much too high.

Roxas said that if diesel and unleaded likewise dropped as much as the MOPS prices have since July, they should have cost P27.38/L and P24.73/L, respectively, for December. Yet the December prices of diesel and unleaded only showed decreases of 35.8% and 40.5%, respectively.

Therefore, Roxas insists that the oil firms are overcharging by about P10 per liter.

He said that he would nonetheless call for a hearing on the pricing of petroleum products, inviting the DoE, the oil companies and transport groups, among others. In previous hearings, Roxas had already called on DoE Sec. Angelo Reyes to exercise his visitorial powers and inspect the books of the oil companies.

"Mukhang kailangan talagang kulitin ang ating mga opisyal sa ehekutibo para kumilos. Kaninong interes ba ang kanilang inaatupag? (It looks like we have to really nag our officials in the executive for them to act. Whose interest are they looking out for?)," he said.

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