oil industry

Surge in fuel prices may set back Boracay recovery

Jun Aguirre
Surge in fuel prices may set back Boracay recovery

HIGH FUEL PRICES. A signboard at a gasoline station in Boracay shows fuel prices from October 25 to 31, 2021.

Jun Aguirre/Rappler

Although rising fuel prices are a trend both nationwide and globally, the Malay municipal government will look into the reasons behind soaring prices of petroleum products in Boracay

Soaring fuel prices could set back economic recovery in Boracay, the famous tourist destination in Aklan province.

Gasoline in Boracay has reached P89 to P92 per liter, while diesel hovers around P72 to P73.

Although rising fuel prices are a trend both nationwide and globally, Acting Malay Mayor Floribar Bautista said on Thursday, October 28, that the local government would look into the reasons behind soaring prices of petroleum products in the island.

Boracay’s fuel prices are even higher than the October 22 rates of petroleum products in Zamboanga City, said to be the highest in Mindanao.

“I received concerns coming from the transport group. I understand that diesel is an unregulated industry, but I want to know the profit margin of these gas companies,” Bautista told Rappler in an interview.

The mayor fears that developments on the fuel front could set back the recovery of many businesses at a time when the island, considered one of the world’s top beach destinations, is just starting to reopen to tourists.

Boracay resident Shallah Pelayo pointed out that their gasoline supply needs to be hauled from the Malay mainland to the island.

Truly Flaviano Jr., who has two food enterprises that deliver to resorts in Boracay, also lamented the spike in prices.

“Bilang nagpapa-deliver araw-araw, masakit po at sobrang mahal. Ganoon din para sa generator na ginagamit. Sa pandemic sana, kailangan makatipid kasi nagsisimula lang uling kumita, pero wala kaming magagawa,” he said.

(As someone who has fuel delivered daily, this is painful. The cost is too high, especially since we need to use a generator. During this pandemic, we need to scrimp because we’re just starting to earn again, but there’s nothing we can do.)

Flaviano and other small entrepreneurs need generators because of frequent power outages in Boracay. He is also worried that electricity rates could soon rise since most power firms depend on fuel sources.

Rio Balgos, a seafood vendor, said the hike in fuel prices will affect almost everything one needs.

“Mas kokonti ang kita namin, eh sobrang baba pa nga,” he said. (Our income, which remains low, will drop even further.) – Rappler.com