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Formosa Petrochemical announces gasoline price hike for next week

2018/01/20 21:52:34

Taipei, Jan. 20 (CNA) Formosa Petrochemical Corp., a private fuel supplier in Taiwan, said Saturday that it has decided to raise its domestic gasoline prices for next week, while leaving diesel prices unchanged.

The decision to hike gasoline prices reflected an increase in international crude oil prices largely in reflection of a drop in U.S. crude oil inventories last week, with Formosa Petrochemical raising its gasoline prices by NT$0.1 (US$0.0034) per liter, effective from 1 a.m. Monday.

It is the sixth consecutive week in which the private fuel supplier has pushed up its gasoline prices.

Once the adjustments come into effect, prices at Formosa Petrochemical gas stations islandwide will stay unchanged at NT$24.8 per liter for super diesel, but prices will rise to NT$27.2 per liter for 92 octane unleaded, NT$28.6 per liter for 95 unleaded and NT$30.7 per liter for 98 unleaded, the company said.

Market analysts said a fall in crude oil stocks in the U.S. market have eased concerns over a global supply glut, sending crude prices higher.

According to a report released by the Energy Information Administration (EIA), U.S. crude oil inventories fell 6.9 million barrels in the week to Jan. 12 to 412.7 million barrels, marking the ninth straight week of decline.

The latest weekly inventory drop was steeper than an earlier market estimate of a 3.5 million barrel decline.

In addition, the Niger Delta Avengers, a militant group in Nigeria, threatened to attack the African country's oil production facilities, which also gave a boost to the global crude oil market, analysts said.

However, the gains posted by international crude prices were capped by an increase in shale oil production in the U.S. market, the analysts added. According to the EIA, U.S. crude oil production rose almost 300,000 barrels per day to 9.75 million barrels per day last week.

With the rise in crude oil prices, Formosa Petrochemical's main competitor, state-owned CPC Corp. Taiwan, is likely at Sunday noon to announce similar price adjustments for next week, effective 12 hours later.

CPC calculates its weekly fuel prices based on a weighted oil price formula made up of 70 percent Dubai crude and 30 percent Brent crude.

Based on the latest fluctuations in international crude oil prices, CPC's average price of crude oil was calculated at US$67.61 per barrel as of Thursday, an increase of US$0.55 from a week earlier, according to its website.

(By Cheng Hsueh-wen and Frances Huang)
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