Friday, November 06, 2009

Crude oil prices continue a "roller coaster ride"

Strong international demand for refined fuels has caused a slight increase in retail prices throughout Papua New Guinea.

The November price schedule has gasoline (ULP) about one per cent higher while diesel and kerosene will cost about 4 per cent more.

InterOil president Bill Jasper said a slightly improved U.S. economy had pushed crude oil to more than $US80 a barrel.

“This year fuel prices have been on a wild roller coaster ride.

“For five of the past twelve months prices have actually fallen, for the other months prices have increased.

“The net result is that today most fuels are cheaper than they were a year ago.

“ULP now costs about the same, diesel is about 5 percent cheaper and kerosene is currently about 10 percent less expensive, as compared to last year”.

Mr Jasper said that, despite the negative trend this month, price movements in the medium term had been in favour of the consumer.

“Overall the trend is good news for our retail, commercial and government customers”, he said.

“But it must be remembered that all domestic fuel prices result from pressures (upward and downward) exerted by the international market place.

“As with crude oil, the price of refined fuels is set internationally and beyond the control of the Government, the ICCC or ourselves”, he said.

Mr Jasper also stressed InterOil had to pay the full international market price for the crude oil it used in the refining process.

“We do not receive any special discount for PNG produced crude, even though we are a PNG-based refiner.

“Actually PNG produced crude is always sold at a premium to the benchmark crude for the region.

“Local crude is sold on the international market to the highest bidder and we have to compete against other refiners from other nations for locally produced crude oil”, Mr Jasper said.

For further information contact

Susuve Laumaea

Senior Manager Media Relations InterOil Corporation

Ph: (675) 311 2796

Mobile: (675) 7201 3870


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