Import costs fuel LPG price rise

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 16 September, 2000, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 16 September, 2000, 12:00am

Families using liquefied petroleum gas for cooking will have to pay an extra $13 a month following a price increase announced by Shell.

The net cost for domestic liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) cylinders increased from midnight from $6.15 to $7.13 per kilogram, while domestic piped-in LPG increased from $21.97 to $24.36 per cubic-metre. The rise affects 200,000 households.

LPG vehicles will not be affected. Shell has decided to freeze the price at $3.88 per litre.

General manager of Shell Gas (LPG) Daniel Lau Wing-sing estimated that the price rise would add an extra $13 a month on to the average family fuel budget.

He blamed import costs for the rise, adding that the LPG business in Hong Kong faced a tough operating environment. 'The market is contracting at a rate of two to three per cent a year while supply costs are increasing,' he said.

The Economic Services Bureau said pricing was a commercial decision for the company concerned and no one wanted to see any increases in prices for major fuels.

'It is important that oil companies should reduce prices of their products once import prices come down,' the spokesman said.

The Consumer Council said it hoped other LPG suppliers would not follow suit.

LPG supply companies Caltex and Mobil said they would not yet increase prices.