Sunday, June 15, 2008

LPG smuggling from Thailand to neighbours continues

MAE SOT, June 15 (TNA) - Despite the attempted suppression of smuggling of Thai government-subsidised liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) to neighbouring countries, the illegal activities continue, an official of the Ministry of Energy said Sunday.

Director-General Metta Banturngsuk of the Energy Business Department said Thai-sourced cooking gas is still seen in Myanmar markets opposite the Thai border district of Mae Sot in Tak province although the Thai
government has imposed a ban on its export.

Smuggling of cooking gas across the Thai-Cambodian border is also rampant, according to Mr. Metta.

While it costs about Bt40 per kilogramme in the world market and in Thailand at Bt18.13 kg, the selling price of cooking gas in Cambodia is as high as Bt1,000 per 15 kg tank. In Thailand, the price of LPG is
about Bt270-280 per tank.

In March this year, the Energy Business Department banned the export of LPG as demand for it in Thailand surpassed local production capacity and the country was forced to import it for the first time in April. Imported gas is higher priced than the local product by about double and the government is maintaining the price through subsidisation from its Oil Fund programme.

The demand for LPG in Thailand has sharply risen, especially in the transportation and industrial sectors, due to soaring prices of other forms of energy.

The latest statistics showed that the demand for LPG in April rose to an average of 10.90 million kg daily, up 17.8 per cent from a year ago.

Demand for LPG in the household sector in Thailand usually rises between 2-3 per cent yearly, indicating that LPG is used widely for vehicles, agricultural and industrial sectors.

The Ministry of Energy has decided to maintain retail price of LPG for household use, but will up the price for transportation and industrial sectors next month. (TNA)

Business News : Last Update : 13:34:18 15 June 2008 (GMT+7:00)

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