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August 19, 2017

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CPC, Formosa raise prices of gas, diesel for first time in 13 weeks

Taiwan's two major refiners have raised gasoline and diesel prices for the first time in 13 weeks, on a sharp increase in international oil prices.

The two, CPC Corp. and Formosa Petrochemical, announced yesterday that gasoline and diesel prices would go up by NT$1 and NT$1.1 a liter, respectively, effective 12 a.m. this morning.

With the price adjustment, CPC Corp. is now selling 92-, 95- and 98-grade gasoline at NT$31.8, NT$33.3 and NT$35.3 a liter, respectively, and super diesel at NT$30.5 a liter.

Formosa Petrochemical, CPC's main competitor, meanwhile is offering 92-, 95- and 98-grade gasoline at NT$31.7, NT$33.3 and NT$35.5 a liter, respectively, and diesel at NT$30.5.

According to CPC, international oil prices rose on tensions in the Middle East. The European Union has put into effect an oil import ban from Iran, which then threatened to blockade the Strait of Hormuz.

Norway oil workers, meanwhile, have launched a strike that may affect crude supplies from the North Sea. These factors, coupled with an easing of the European debt crisis, lifted international oil prices.

The benchmark that CPC uses, an average between oil traded on Dubai and Brent indices, rose to US$97.29 per barrel, up US$5.85 from the US$91.44 a week earlier. The figures translate into a price increase of 4.93 percent, or NT$1 and NT$1.1 a liter, respectively, for local gasoline and diesel.

The increase was by its full margin, now that CPC's absorption measure to help stabilize price is no longer in place. CPC stresses Taiwan fuel prices are lower compared to neighboring countries and urges the public to save on fuel and conserve energy.

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