Ministry will propose further tax cut if global petrol price continues rising
"If the world gasoline price continues to rise, the Ministry of Industry and Trade will propose to reduce other taxes and fees further. When all the tax tools are used, but the petrol prices remain high, the ministry will propose competent authorities to use the welfare funds to support the poor and businesses that use a large volume of petrol products," Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien said.
Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien is the first Government member to field questions at the Q&A session this morning. (Photo: SGGP)
In his opening remarks, National Assembly Chairman Vuong Dinh Hue said that this was the first time the 15th NA Standing Committee held a question and answer session. The Q&A session, held at the NA building in Hanoi, is connected with all the 63 NA deputies’ delegations nationwide via videoconference.
Minister of Industry and Trade Nguyen Hong Dien was the first Government member to field questions at the Q&A session this morning. This is also the first time the head of industry and trade has answered questions before the NA.
Mr. Nguyen Hong Dien will clarify issues related to petrol production, import, supply, and price management; the market surveillance and the combat against smuggling, counterfeits, and low-quality or unclear origin goods; measures for ensuring the smooth flow, export, and import of goods, especially agricultural products, amid the Covid-19 pandemic.
Right from the beginning of the Q&A session, 39 delegates registered to question Minister Nguyen Hong Dien.
As the first person to ask the question, NA deputy Tran Quoc Tuan of Tra Vinh Province asked for a radical solution to solve the gasoline supply shortage, which causes businesses to suffer losses, and many petrol stations to hoard goods to wait for the price to increase. This is also a question that many other NA deputies raised for the head of industry and trade.
Minister Nguyen Hong Dien said that the global gasoline price spiked sharply because of supply disruptions in some large oil-producing nations and the impact of the Russia-Ukraine war. The world petroleum market climbed with a margin of 40-60 percent. The domestic supply encountered difficulty because Nghi Son Oil Refinery, which supplies 35 percent of the country's gasoline, reduced capacity. There were many solutions to ensure sufficient domestic supply, including assigning enterprises to double petrol imports. “Petrol is never in short supply,” Minister Dien concluded.
The scene of the Q&A session on March 16. (Photo: SGGP)
"The minister said there was no shortage of petrol supply because of increased imports. So, how do oil refineries work? Especially the Nghi Son Joint Venture, what difficulties do they face that they cannot supply petrol products to the market?” NA deputy Nguyen Thi Kim Be of Kien Giang Province countered. Regarding the scarcity of gasoline, NA deputy Pham Van Hoa of Dong Thap Province frankly said that not only retailers had hoarded goods, but they believed that superior suppliers also had done so. Mr. Dien said that Nghi Son Oil Refinery faced financial difficulties and some internal problems, so it could not afford to import crude oil to produce finished petroleum products. According to a report by Nghi Son Refining and Petrochemical LLC, from the beginning of January 2022, the factory has reduced its capacity from 100 percent to 80 percent and then only at 55-60 percent. Due to the reduction in production capacity, the actual delivery to domestic petroleum wholesalers has decreased. The ministry has had many meetings with the leaders of Nghi Son Refinery and PVN to request the joint venture to fulfill its commitment to supply products to the market. For the time being, petrol products still have to be imported. Regarding the situation of petrol stations hoarding goods, the Minister affirmed that they were being checked, and all violations would be strictly handled. NA deputy Tran Van Sau of Dong Thap Province questioned about the management process of petrol prices of the Ministry of Industry and Trade, as well as the prospect of petrol prices in the coming time. Mr. Nguyen Hong Dien said that at many adjustments, the Fuel Price Stabilization Fund had been used at VND500-VND1,500 per liter or kg of petrol products, depending on the type. “Without using the fund, we cannot have lower prices than the world," he said. According to the Minister of Industry and Trade, maintaining the Fuel Price Stabilization Fund is crucial, but the fund currently only has about VND600 billion left. Meanwhile, the funds in many businesses have been negative. “The two ministries proposed, and the Government has had the resolution to request the Standing Committee of the NA to reduce the environmental protection tax by 50 percent. If this policy is approved and applied from April 1, hopefully, petrol prices will decrease. However, if the world gasoline price continues to rise, the Ministry of Industry and Trade will be proposed to reduce other taxes and fees further. When all the tax tools are used, but the petrol prices remain high, the ministry will propose competent authorities to use the welfare funds to support the poor and businesses that use a large volume of petrol products,” Minister Nguyen Hong Dien said.
The Civil Aviation Authority of Vietnam (CAAV) sent a document proposing cooperation in transporting exam questions for the national high school graduation exam and university entrance examination to aviation organizations and businesses.