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Energy department asked to provide clarity on planned oil import

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Win Gatchalian
Senator Sherwin Gatchalian — Photo by Victor Saulon

The Energy department should provide clarity on its plan to import oil from Russia and non-members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), a lawmaker said.

“‘Yong quantity hindi masyadong clear (The quantity is not so clear),” Senator Sherwin T. Gatchalian told reporters. “To really make an impact we have to import, ako estimate ko (for me, my estimate is) at least 30% of the total demand.”

He said if the government imports only 1% to 2% of what the market demands, the impact of the additional supply might not be felt by consumers.

Late last month, the DoE said it was planning to petroleum products from Russia and other countries that are not members of the OPEC oil cartel. It said the move was meant to “establish a strategic petroleum reserve (SPR) to cushion the impact of the rising price of oil in the international market.” — Victor V. Saulon