Probe into PH’s adequate oil supply sought

September 20, 2019

SENATOR Sherwin “Win” Gatchalian wants to  look into the  Department of Energy’s (DOE) plans to ensure the country has  adequate oil supply  following the attack on Saudi Arabian Oil Company’s (ARAMCO) key facilities last week.

Gatchalian, chair of the Senate Committee on Energy, filed Senate Resolution No. 139 for the committee to conduct an inquiry into the  plans of the DoE to achieve energy security and mitigate the effects of supply shocks on the country’s oil supply and prices following the ARAMCO attack.

“The DOE, as the primary agency in charge of planning and implementation of comprehensive programs for the supply of energy, needs to inform the Filipino public about the effects of the Saudi ARAMCO attack on oil supply and prices in the Philippines,” Gatchalian said.

“The DOE also needs to state its short- and medium- term plans and strategies to ensure continuous and sufficient supply and reasonable prices amidst strains in the Middle East, as well as its its long-term plans and strategies to achieve energy security in order to prevent vulnerability to supply shocks and insulate consumers from unexpected shortages and sharp price increases,” he added.

The Committee on Energy hearing is scheduled this  Monday at 9 a.m.

Damage to Saudi ARAMCO oil installations ignited fears of supply disruption around the world and has sent crude prices soaring by double digits. Saudi Arabia is the top Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) producer of crude oil.

“The attack on ARAMCO eliminated about 5% of global oil supply and triggered a 12% increase in oil prices on September 16, which is reportedly the biggest jump since the 1990-1991 Gulf crisis,” Gatchalian pointed out.

According to Gatchalian, as of June of 2019, 99.9% of crude oil in the Philippines is imported, with 12% of the country’s supply coming from Saudi Arabia.

“This attack on Saudi ARAMCO and the brewing conflict in the region raises concerns on the availability of supply and its effect on oil prices in the Philippines specifically in the transportation and power generation sectors,” he added.

Sixty-eight percent of petroleum supply in the Philippines is consumed by the transportation sector, while power generation uses 5%. 11% is for commercial use, 5% for manufacturing, and the remaining 11% is used by other industries including agriculture, mining, and construction.