DOE wants to revive Pantawid Pasada Program amid soaring oil prices
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Energy (DOE) will propose the reimplementation of the Pantawid Pasada Program to alleviate the public utility operators’ woes on soaring fuel costs, an Energy official said Wednesday.
Under the Pantawid Pasada Program, each recipient will receive a fuel subsidy card. In 2021, a one-time subsidy of P7,200 per unit was given to operators.
“Mayroon po tayong mga temporary relief na ginagawa as far as public utility vehicles or transport sector is concerned. ‘Yun po nakikipag-coordination na po tayo kay DOTr (Department of Transportation), LTFRB (Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board) para mag-implement ulit at i-propose ulit ‘yung Pantawid Pasada Program na may pondo naman po sila,” DOE Assistant Director Rodela Romero said during the Laging Handa public briefing.
(We are doing temporary relief as far as public utility vehicles or the transport sector is concerned. We are coordinating with the DOTr and LTFRB to implement and propose again the Pantawid Pasada Program which they have a budget for.)
Senator Grace Poe earlier appealed to gasoline station operators to offer discounts as oil prices continue to increase.
READ: Poe calls on fuel station operators to offer discounts amid price hikes
Romero added that the DOE had also earlier suggested the temporary suspension of excise tax which is now being reviewed by Congress.
“May proposal po sa nakaraang mga technical working groups at Department of Energy na ‘yun nga po, kung temporarily baka pwedeng i-suspend po [‘yung excise tax] pero nandu’n na po ‘yun sa Congress at pinag-aaralan,” said Romero.
(We had a proposal in the past technical working groups and the Department of Energy if we could temporarily suspend excise tax for fuel but it has already been raised in Congress.)
Meanwhile, the LTFRB said they will distribute a P6,500 subsidy to franchise grantees under the Fuel Subsidy Program.
“The P6,500 subsidy that will be given to franchise grantees will be under the Fuel Subsidy Program. The payment will be coursed through the Pantawid Pasada Program (PPP) cash cards for use sa (in) gas stations,” the agency said in a message to INQUIRER.net.
“This time, more transport modes will be included, aside from traditional and modern [public utility jeepneys],” it added.
According to Romero, the fuel price hike is due to the events happening in the international oil market such as the tension between Russia and Ukraine.
Oil companies bare hefty hike in gasoline, diesel prices
Markets rise, oil holds losses on Russia-Ukraine hopes
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.