The Philippines will import about 240 million liters of diesel from Russia and other countries that are not members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), an energy official said on Thursday.
This, however, is not expected to bring down oil prices in the country.
Energy Undersecretary Felix William Fuentebella said the importation was only for “stockpiling purposes.”
“It’s too small. What we are saying is that it is for stockpiling. It will support our minimum inventory requirement, so more of energy security,” Fuentebella said in a Palace briefing.
“But nonetheless, we are exploring this process so that in the end it would help lower down prices,” he added.
The energy official said the Philippine National Oil Company – Exploration Corporation has started the importation process, which would only be good for three days and would not have an “immediate” impact on oil prices in the Philippines.
“If you are asking me if that figure will be significant, not yet. But the marching orders of the President is towards that direction,” he said. “What we are pushing is competition so we added players.”
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque said earlier that the decision to import oil from Russia was President Rodrigo Duterte’s order aimed at addressing consumers’ concern on rising oil prices. /ee