Amid falling ratings, Aquino OKs fuel subsidy

Published by rudy Date posted on April 1, 2011

A one-month fuel subsidy to public transport franchisers has been approved in principle, President Aquino said yesterday, as part of his government’s initial response to the continuous rounds of oil price hikes in the country owing to the still unabated political crises confronting the Middle East.

In a chance interview with reporters following his speaking engagement in Bauan, Batangas, Aquino disclosed that the draft executive order (EO) for the proposed fuel subsidy to aid the public transport sector had already been approved during their Cabinet meeting last Monday.

The Chief Executive reiterated explanations that the problem on the increases of oil prices at the world market is beyond the government’s control since nobody has projected the predicaments that would hound oil-exporting countries in the Middle East.

He said what the government can do right now is to come up with a daily fuel subsidy to all public transport franchisers which would be implemented for at least one month or depending on the conditions of oil prices at the global market.

“My idea was, instead of going through different ways to help our countrymen, why don’t we directly initiate a slash on the price of fuel that is used for public transportation,” Aquino said.

To go about this plan, Aquino said the government will start distributing so-called “smartcards” which jeepney and tricycle drivers can use to avail of the fuel subsidy. He said the administration will allocate an estimated P500 million worth of funds to assist all vehicles with the necessary franchises.

“After the end of the month, we will revise (our plan) — see if the subsidy should be increased, removed or reduced — depending on the condition of crude prices at the world market,” Aquino said, adding that the funds for such endeavor shall be drawn from the government’s savings.

Aquino conveyed that it is still uncertain whether bus companies will also be covered by the said subsidy in lieu of their petitions for a fare increase and they are yet to decide just how much per liter of gasoline and other fuel products will be subsidized by the government. He, however, hinted that the figures for the tricycle operators alone are “daunting.”

“But the bottom line is, we are already in the last stages of working with Land Bank and there’s one other bank that will be producing the smartcards for us. They have the systems in place already then we’re also done with the inventory of franchisers. I repeat, (it is only) for those who have been granted a franchise…so that the subsidy won’t be diverted anywhere,” Aquino explained nonetheless.

Presidential Communications Development and Strategic Planning Secretary Ramon Carandang, for his part, clarified in a text message that the said EO has not been signed yet for they are still working out on other details.  –Aytch S. de la Cruz, Daily Tribune

Month – Workers’ month

“Hot for workers rights!”


Solidarity with CTU Myanmar,
trade unions around the world,
for democracy in Myanmar,
with the daily protests of
people in Myanmar against
the military coup and
continuing oppression.


Accept National Unity Government
(NUG) of Myanmar.
Reject Military!

#WearMask #WashHands

Time to support & empower survivors.
Time to spark a global conversation.
Time for #GenerationEquality to #orangetheworld!
Trade Union Solidarity Campaigns
Get Email from NTUC
Article Categories