August 25, 2008 – 1:35 p.m.
A party-list representative said that oil companies, especially the Big Three oil players, should reveal their pricing mechanisms to Congress.
Bayan Muna Representative Teddy Casiño warned the Pilipinas Shell, Chevron Philippines [formerly Caltex], and Petron to stop ‘deliberately withholding vital information or face sanctions from Congress. Tomorrow, the House Committee on Energy will hold the second hearing on bills seeking to reform the oil industry.
Casiño said that the public relations officials of the three oil firms refused to answer questions from House members regarding their pricing mechanisms at the Energy Committee meeting, Aug. 20. He said that they also failed to disclose their foreign suppliers.
“Shell, Chevron and Petron must provide Congress with all the information regarding its pricing mechanisms and the sourcing of its crude and finished products to aid us in crafting policy reforms aimed at protecting the consuming public,” said Casiño.
The lawmaker added, “The oil companies continue to rake in profits at the expense of every Filipino. Congress would like to know the mechanics of how they procure their supplies and peg prices in order to legislate appropriate measures to afford the people immediate and medium term solutions to oil price hikes.”
The Fortune Magazine Global 500 reports that Royal Dutch Shell, the mother company of Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corp., posted a net profit of $31.3 billion in 2007, making it the second most profitable company in the world next to oil giant Exxon Mobil. On the same year, Pilipinas Shell posted profits worth P4.12 billion. Chevron Corp., mother unit of Chevron Philippines, posted a net profit of $18.7 billion in 2007 or nine percent higher than the previous year. Its local unit posted P2.75 billion in profits.
Meanwhile, Petron’s former partner, Saudi Aramco, posted profits of around $15 billion in 2007.(Bulatlat.com)