Tue, Dec 09, 2008 - Page 12 News List

Ministry slashes price for natural gas

STAFF WRITER, WITH AGENCIES

The Ministry of Economic Affairs yesterday cut domestic natural gas prices by an average 12.99 percent retroactively, starting from Monday last week.

Each household will see a price cut of approximately NT$2.5 per kilowatt hour, or at least NT$100 per month, Vice Minister of Economic Affairs Shih Yen-shiang (施顏祥) said yesterday after a meeting in the legislature on natural gas prices.

The price cut would incorporate the 2.99 percent cut announced by state-run oil refiner CPC Corp, Taiwan (CPC, 台灣中油) on Dec. 2, he said.

Ahead of the meeting of the Economics Committee, legislators suggested the price drop for natural gas should be similar to that of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).

Chinese Nationalist Party (KMT) Legislator Lee Ching-hua (李慶華) was first to announce the cut in natural gas prices, adding that KMT legislators had reached a consensus with CPC and the Bureau of Energy to distribute all of CPC’s earnings from natural gas sales this month back to the public.

The natural gas pricing formula will also be reviewed on a monthly basis, CPC said in a statement yesterday.

The oil refiner said its natural gas department had accumulated NT$34.7 billion (US$1.03 billion) in losses in the first 11 months of the year and was likely to lose another NT$620 million this month.

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