Thailand: Cooking gas price cap remains

The Energy Policy Administration Committee (Epac) has decided to continue to cap liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) at 24.87 baht per kilogramme until the end of October to ease the living costs of cooking gas users.

The move causes authorities to subsidise the LPG price by 7.87 baht per kg, using money from the state’s quickly dwindling Oil Fuel Fund.

The decision fixes the cooking gas price at 408 baht per 15kg cylinder until Oct 31, according to the Epac.

The price does not include transport expense, which will make the gas more expensive when sold to households.

Epac previously planned to have the LPG price increase by one baht per kg each month to decrease the financial burden on the Oil Fuel Fuel, which has already run a loss of more than 120 billion baht under the LPG and diesel price subsidy programmes.

Energy policymakers eventually agreed to help people with high energy costs as global energy prices remain elevated, said Energy Minister Supattanapong Punmeechaow, who also chairs Epac.

The Department of Energy Business was also assigned to find additional measures to help low-income earners better deal with the energy price crisis.

Epac also resolved to cap the price of compressed natural gas (CNG) used in the transport sector at 16.59 baht per kg, compared with market prices of between 29 and 34 baht per kg.

Taxi drivers who are registered under a special CNG price subsidy programme run by national oil and gas conglomerate PTT can also buy the gas at the lower price.

Qualified transport drivers will pay 13.62 baht per kg from Sept 16 to Dec 15.

Mr Supattanapong said PTT, the sole seller of CNG, has spent 6.75 billion baht to subsidise CNG price since Nov 1 last year.