Burma’s Gasoline Retailers Urged to Cut Prices

By Kyaw Hsu Mon 28 January 2016

RANGOON — With world oil prices sinking, the Myanmar Petroleum Traders Association (MPTA)has urged the country’s gasoline retailers to slash prices.

In a letter to the association, the Ministry of Energy said that although the retail price at Rangoon gas stations has seen a small decline—from about 50 to 80 kyat (US$0.04 to 0.06) per liter—the gap between world and domestic prices has yet to be sufficiently bridged.

“While importers can easily reduce the wholesale price, it’s more difficult to reduce the retail prices at gas stations because there are costs for running these stations,” said Win Myint, chairman of the MPTA.

“Some stations in other cities haven’t reduced their retail price. That’s why now we’re encouraging them to cut the price as much as they can,” he added.

Distribution at gas stations has proliferated since the Burmese government eased restrictions on importing gasoline in 2011. More than 50 companies now import from Singapore alone.

Burma imports some 80,000 tons of octane and 200,000 tons of diesel each day, according to the MPTA. In Burma, one liter of octane is about 550 kyats, down from 600 kyats, while diesel prices have fallen from 570 to 500 kyat over the last week.

In the world market, one barrel of oil runs for approximately $30 to $50.