Thursday, September 24, 2009

Oil price rollback, not enough

DAVAO CITY, Philippines (Mindanao Examiner / September 24, 2009) – A pro-poor organization KADAMAY or the Kalipunan ng Damayang Mahihirap has called the recent 25 centavos rollback on petrol prices as an insult to Filipino consumers, saying, giant oil companies are earning huge profits enough to feed millions of hungry people.

Franchie Buhayan, KADAMAY Secretary General, said it is not only insulting for the ordinary Filipinos to be given such cheap token, but it is more insignificant seeing how the pump-pricing of leading oil firms is taking a toll on the living conditions of consumers, especially those who belong to the poorest sectors.

“While research institution GALLUP international has placed the country as the 5th poorest in the world and surveys have consistently placed the number of hungry Filipinos at a 4:10 ratio, oil cartels have also been reaping millions in profit daily,” Buhayan, who is also the spokesperson of the progressive group Anakpawis, said in a statement sent to the Mindanao Examiner.

She pointed out that Chevron and Exxon Mobil, two of the worlds’ biggest oil companies, come in 1st and 2nd place in Fortune 500’s most profitable corporations in 2008 with earnings reaching 46-billion dollars and 24-billion dollars, respectively.

Buhayan said a recent study published by the Bagong Alyansang Makabayan showed Shell Filipinas, Petron and Chevron Philippines earn additional earnings of approximately 167-million pesos daily from jacked - up petroleum products.

Buhayan maintained that no rollback or pleadings from the Department of Energy and the Palace will resolve the crisis wrought by the continued skyrocketing of oil price as the crux of this crisis is the continued implementation of the Oil Deregulation Law and the tax-greedy Arroyo regime.

“The scrapping of the Oil Deregulation Law is long overdue as it is unconstitutional to begin with. The damages it has caused to our economy and the burden it has passed on to millions of poor Filipino families are already unbearable and unacceptable,” Buhayan said.

She added: “The government’s incapacity to regulate oil prices has worsened the grueling conditions of our economy and of our people. Gloria Arroyo has nailed our nation to endless abuse of the US economic hegemony through its dominance in the World Trade Organization and imperialist globalization.”

The Anakpawis Party lists together with Representatives Satur Ocampo, Teodoro Casino and Liza Maza have filed house resolutions that call for the repeal of the Oil Deregulation Law and the centralized importation of oil and the re-nationalization of Petron.

“Unfortunately, such relevant house bills are ignored by the lower house and by the Arroyo regime,” Buhayan said

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