A source from the Oil Trade Department under the Ministry of Energy said that oil prices will be announced weekly to help bring about greater public transparency.
The announcement will include a possible maximum and minimum price after calculating port arrival, tax rate, trade tax and other expenses, according to U Tint Naing Soe, supervisor of the department.
He said, “People ask why local price does not drop when global crude oil price drops. The announcement is made to answer this. The market is not being monopolised and citizens can choose what they prefer to buy.”
Only local companies with industrial oil import licence are allowed to import and oil usually takes about five days to arrive at port. It is difficult to change local price with global price changes.
Oil price calculation will have to include the exchange rate and spot price from Singapore. The price announcement is not for the preference of petrol stations, but for consumers’ benefit, U Tint Naing Soe said.
U Maung Maung Naing, an oil importer, said, “Typically, around four companies have to import the product together in a joint agreement. Price changes happen even before the product arrives when local price is high and the global price drops. This happens because the product has to be bought with older, higher prices. Price reversal also happens sometimes. This announcement allows consumers to see actual oil prices.”
Currently, there are 116 petrol stations selling oil imported by 50-60 companies, according ministry of energy statistics.