The ministries of finance and trade-industry have given the green light to the second gasoline price hike this month with a six percent rise, bringing the retail gasoline price in Vietnam to VND20,100-21,030 per liter.
Following the approval from the two ministries, the Vietnam National Petroleum Corporation (Petrolimex), which holds the largest market share of fuel distribution in the country with 48 percent, raised the retail prices of RON 92 and RON 95 gasoline and E5 biofuel to VND20,430, VND21,030 and VND20,100 per liter, respectively, from 8:00 pm on Wednesday (US$1 = VND21,673).
This is the second consecutive price hike of gasoline prices this month and the third since the beginning of the year. With the latest price increase, current gasoline prices have risen over 30 percent so far this year.
Though the two ministries also allowed local fuel wholesalers to raise the price of kerosene and diesel oil, the businesses, including Petrolimex, chose not to do so.
The price hike is caused by the mounting pressure of world oil prices, the two ministries said, adding that the price of gasoline has continued to rise in the last fifteen days to $83.97 a barrel.
After adding up all the taxes, fees, commissions and allotted profits, the base price of RON 92 gasoline is VND2,254 higher than the old rates, thus forcing the state agencies to give the go-ahead for the price adjustment, the two ministries said.
This is the fifth adjustment of petrol prices since the beginning of the year, after two reductions and two surges.
On May 5, gasoline prices rose by a record rate of VND1,950 to VND19,230 per liter. It was also the biggest gain since March 2011.
Local gasoline price hit its peak in March 2013 at VND24,580 per liter.
Since the beginning of this month, environmental protection taxes slapped on fuel and diesel oil have increased from VND1,000 to VND3,000 per liter and from VND500 to VND1,500 per liter, respectively.
Petrolimex last week announced that it had a consolidated net profit of VND388 billion ($17.85 million) in the first quarter of this year, up 77 percent compared to the same period last year.