UMP prices of diesel are expected to go up again next week, while gasoline may go down by a minimal five to 20 centavos per liter.
An industry source said the prices of diesel might increase by P1.10 to P1.30 per liter due to movements in the peso-dollar exchange market.
Unioil said diesel prices for June 28 to July 4 might go up by P1.20 to P1.40 per liter, while the cutback for gasoline would likely be P0.10 to P0.20 per liter.
Lawyer Rino Abad, director of the Department of Energy’s (DOE) oil industry management bureau, said there may be an increase in the prices of diesel and kerosene next week due to the Philippine peso’s current performance against the US dollar. Gasoline prices, meanwhile, may remain the same or be rolled back a bit, he said.
Last Tuesday fuel companies hiked gasoline prices by P0.80 per liter, diesel by P3.10, and kerosene by P1.70, marking the third straight week of fuel price upticks.
Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi said that in the past four days, the softening of the peso has resulted in about P1 per liter increase for diesel and kerosene, but said gasoline prices might actually decline.
The peso weakened to about P54.98 to the US dollar on Friday. During the June 13-17 trading days, the peso depreciated week-on-week against the US dollar by P0.44, or to P53.36 from P52.93 the previous week.
Abad said pump prices would have declined next week were it not for the peso depreciation.
He said world oil prices declined by about $3 per barrel due to concerns that the US interest hikes would affect economic growth.
“Unfortunately, instead of a rollback, there will be a slight increase due to the impact of the softening of the peso against the dollar,” Abad said.
On June 21, the oil companies raised the price of gasoline by P0.80 per liter, diesel by P3.10 per liter, and kerosene by P1.70 per liter.
These resulted in a net increase of P29.50 per liter for gasoline, P44.25 per liter for diesel, and P39.65 per liter for kerosene since the start of the year.
From June 14 to June 20, gasoline was sold from P75.15 per liter to P98.10 per liter, diesel for P77.40 to P94.90 per liter, and kerosene from P87.94 to P97.34 per liter in the National Capital Region.
In the face of the continuous rise in fuel prices, Deputy Speaker and Rep. Isidro Ungab of Davao City said the government should study setting aside some projects and reallocating their budget to cash subsidies for public transport operators and drivers.
“We acknowledge that everyone is feeling the brunt of these oil price hikes, but the ones suffering the most are those in the transport, farming, and fisheries sectors,” Ungab said.
Ungab said he supports President-Elect Ferdinand Marcos Jr.’s plan to give direct assistance to help mitigate the impact of the continued oil price hikes.
He also cautioned against suspending the excise tax on fuel products, saying the government might be losing a huge amount of funding that could be used to help the poor in times of crisis.
“The option to suspend taxes should be on a case-to-case basis. There is a need to study the proposal, or else the government might run out of funds, which might cause a huge problem,” Ungab said.
Also on Friday, incoming National Security Adviser Clarita Carlos said Marcos was open to buying oil from Russia, which is under a Western embargo following its unprovoked invasion of Ukraine.
She said Filipinos must lose the anti-Russia and pro-US mindset, as this was a matter of energy security.