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9 Mar 2005


10 Ways to Cope with Rising Oil Prices: Gasoline Rising to Bt22/Liter


Of late, domestic fuel prices have skyrocketed to nearly Bt22 per liter. On March 5, 2005, retail pump prices of gasoline throughout the Greater Bangkok Area were lifted by 40 Satang, pushing premium and regular gasoline prices to Bt21.69 and Bt20.89 per liter, respectively. This increase took place after the upward adjustment in gasoline prices that was seen on March 1, 2005. This means that in only the first four days of March, we saw the prices of gasoline climb as much as 80 Satang per liter. Throughout February this year, gasoline prices moved upward four times by 40 Satang per liter, each occasion, putting the total increase for the month at Bt1.60 per liter. In addition, with the two latest rises in March, the total increase in gasoline prices thus equals Bt2.40 per liter.

In the midst of dearer oil prices, all Thai people will have to shoulder greater burdens for fuel purchases where prices have surged by 12.7 percent since earlier this year (based on the price on January 1, 2005, 95 Octane motor fuel was Bt19.29 per liter, and 91 Octane was Bt18.49 per liter). Moreover, the latest sprint in oil prices, even though not breaking the record, still hovers near the peak of Bt22.39 per liter on October 20, 2004, the date that gasoline fuel price floatation was announced. However, the oil price situation in the world market has been tending to move steadily higher, until, on March 9, 2005, the price of raw crude in the NYMEX forward market reached USD54.69 per barrel. This price is close to the peak of USD55.67 per barrel on October 25, 2004. From this trend of rising prices in the world oil markets, we can believe that the Thai nation will definitely see domestic motor fuel prices (95 Octane) reaching Bt22 per liter again soon, because after only another 40 Satang increase per liter, the price of 95 Octane will reach Bt22.09 per liter.