Government promises utmost efforts to alleviate impact from soaring oil prices
The government has promised to do everything in its power to maintain the price of diesel oil at no higher than 30 baht per litre, as fuel prices hit their highest levels in 14 years following the military conflict between Russia and Ukraine.
Energy Minister Supattanapong Punmeechaow said on Friday that the Energy and Finance ministries, as well as the National Economic and Social Development Council, are considering different measures to cushion the impact from the soaring fuel prices.
“The three agencies are preparing additional measures in case the situation persists. We are looking for additional measures besides maintaining diesel price at not more than 30 baht per litre,” he said.
Supattanapong, who also doubles as deputy prime minister, said the government was closely following changes in diesel oil prices to be ready with appropriate measures.
“Petrol prices are now the highest in 14 years. There was some decrease but the prices are still fluctuating. So, we must remain cautious. The government will find ways to do the best we can,” he said.
According to the energy minister, there will be measures for different price ranges in the global oil market — for crude oil over $100 a barrel, $101-130 a barrel, $131-150 a barrel, and over $150 a barrel.
In response to a proposal that part of the 500-billion-baht loan to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic should be spent in subsidising domestic oil prices, Supattanapong said that would be unlawful, as the decree that allows the government to borrow clearly states the loan must be for easing the impact of Covid-19 on healthcare and the economy.