Formosa Petrochemical announces fuel price hike for next week

Formosa Petrochemical Corp. (台塑石化), a privately owned fuel supplier in Taiwan, said on Saturday that it will increase gasoline and diesel prices after crude oil prices in the U.S. market posted the biggest weekly gains in more than five years.

Crude oil prices continued an uptrend in the wake of an agreement to cut production reached by the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) earlier this week, which led Formosa Petrochemical to increase gasoline and diesel prices by NT$0.3 (US$0.009) per liter next week, starting at 1 a.m. on Monday.

Formosa Petrochemical will raise fuel prices for the third consecutive week after increasing gasoline and diesel prices by NT$0.7 and NT$0.8 per liter, respectively, the previous two weeks.

Crude oil prices fell earlier this week amid skepticism over whether OPEC would ink a final deal after a preliminary agreement reached in September to lower production, analysts said.

However, on Nov. 30 OPEC members met in Vienna and struck a final agreement in which they will reduce oil production by 1.2 million barrels per day in a bid to boost global prices.

It was the first production cut deal reached by OPEC since 2008 and it lifted crude oil prices by almost 9 percent that day.

Crude prices continued to trend higher as Russia, a non-OPEC member, voiced support for the agreement and agreed to join the oil cartel to lower output, analysts said.

For the week, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude in New York settled up 12.2 percent, the best weekly performance since February, 2011. Brent crude, the global market benchmark also gained 15 percent this week.

As a result, higher crude oil prices will push up fuel prices at Formosa Petrochemical gas stations islandwide to NT$20.9 per liter for super diesel, NT$23.5 per liter for 92 octane unleaded, NT$25.0 per liter for 95 unleaded and NT$27.3 per liter for 98 unleaded.

Formosa Petrochemical’s main competitor, state-owned CPC Corp., Taiwan (中油), is expected to announce similar price adjustments at noon on Sunday, with the hike coming into effect at midnight.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel

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