At least four major petroleum wholesalers sent proposals to increase retail prices to the Ministry of Finance, as of April 18.
Four major petroleum wholesalers ask for another price hike
According to the ministry’s Department of Price Management, the these firms include Vietnam National Petroleum Corp (Petrolimex), PetroVietnam Oil Corp (PV Oil), Saigon Petro Limited Company and Dong Thap Petroleum Trading Limited Company.
An anonymous official of one wholesaler said they are incurring increasing losses because currently selling prices are lower than the imported prices.
The department’s Director Nguyen Tien Thoa said the price of imported petroleum has increased to around USD134 per barrel over the past month.
Petrol import taxes were already been cut to zero on February 21, leaving the ministry trying to find other ways to appease petroleum traders, he said.
Recently, several traders have complained that they are losing between VND800 and VND1,000 (USD0.03-USD0.04) per litre. This, they say, has forced them to lower commissions to retailers by around VND100-VND150 per litre. Now commissions hover between VND300 and VND350 per litre of gasoline, and VND450 per litre for other oil products.
Last week, many petroleum stores in the central province of Thua Thien Hue halted operations because they could not make a profit on such low commissions.
An official from the provincial Department of Industry and Trade pointed out that wholesalers may be decreasing commissions on purpose in order to force the Government's hand to allow another price hike.