Opposition lawmakers yesterday called on the state-run Chinese Petroleum Corp (CPC, 中油) to refrain from increasing fuel prices after Formosa Petroleum Corp (台塑石化), CPC's only domestic rival, announced on Wednesday that it was raising its wholesale gas prices by almost 10 percent.
People First Party caucus whip Hwang Yih-jiau (黃義交) said that his caucus respected the price hikes put in place by Formosa Petrochemical because it is a private company, and because it had no choice but to make adjustments in accordance with market forces.
But Hwang called on the CPC, as a state-run company, to consider people's livelihoods rather than its own interests and keep prices at their current level.
Taiwan Solidarity Union caucus whip Mark Ho (何敏豪) said that any oil price hikes should take into consideration public sentiment, and that the government should listen to the public.
"We hope the CPC does not follow Formosa's move and instead helps to stabilize oil prices," he said.
The CPC was expected to raise the wholesale price of gasoline products by NT$4 per liter, but that plan was postponed by Premier Frank Hsieh (謝長廷), the Unique Business News TV program reported yesterday.