Dumaguete City is second to Tagbilaran City, Bohol, in terms of high prices of gasoline in the Visayas Region, Antonio Labios, Department of Energy Visayas Field Office director, said Wednesday at the session of the Dumaguete Sangguniang Panlungsod.
The SP is investigating the reasons for the high cost of fuel in Dumaguete City and Negros Oriental, compared to the neighboring province of Cebu.
Labios said DOE has no control over the price of fuel because of the Oil Deregulation law. What it can do is to regularly monitor pricing of fuel operators in the Visayas regions, on the disparity.
He said reason for the low fuel price in Cebu is the price war among gasoline operators. He denied allegations that fuel smuggling in Cebu, is the reason for the lower fuel price compared to other provinces in the Visayas.
But he said the DOE has formed a task force to monitor the compliance by big players in the fuel industry with the right fuel price. The task force will also probe the alleged smuggling of fuel, and the allegation of cartel among local players in Negros Oriental.
Gasoline station operators have explained that the high fuel price in Dumaguete City is due to the transportation cost, since majority of them get their supply from the bulk station in Bacolod.
But Vice Mayor Allan Gel Cordova said the situation in Dumaguete City is somewhat peculiar because all gasoline stations, big or small, have the same fuel prices.*MA
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