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Gatchalian to DOE: Brace for possible oil price hikes after OPEC+ cuts

Senate energy committee vice chairperson Sherwin Gatchalian on Tuesday urged the government to prepare for a possible increase in domestic oil prices after Saudi Arabia and other OPEC+ oil producers announced that they will cut their production to around 1.16 million barrels per day.

“This event is unfortunate, and the government should immediately take actions that would cushion the impact of a possible effect on the domestic economy, particularly since this would further intensify inflationary pressures,” the senator said in a statement.

With this development, Gatchalian said the Department of Energy should immediately coordinate with stakeholders and industry players to make sure that there’s sufficient and steady supply of energy in the country.

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) should likewise prepare for an efficient and timely implementation of Pantawad Pasada program—the government’s subsidy program for the transportation sector, Gatchalian said.

“To avoid delay in the disbursement of the subsidy and to ensure the desired impact is realized, the LTFRB and other government agencies concerned should be ready to implement the program efficiently and should have learned the lessons from previous disbursements,” the senator added.

Gatchalian earlier filed Senate Bill 384 which seeks to institutionalize the Pantawid Pasada program which he said will safeguard the public transport sector against oil price shocks.

Further, the lawmaker said the DOE should fast-track the implementation of the Electric Vehicle Industry Development Act to encourage the use of electric vehicles and lessen the country’s dependence on imported oil in the future.—LDF, GMA Integrated News