Thai fuel ban begins to hit Myawady

Myawady – Thailand banned the export of petrol, diesel and oil to Myawady since last Sunday and there would be shortages within a week, said filling station owners.

“We are facing shortage of diesel right now. It can be imported officially through the Friendship Bridge but we have a lack of oil trucks and have to take care not to exceed the maximum weight on the bridge,” said a filling station owner.

Residents are concerned about the prospect of rising prices.

“Prices will increase for sure. Last time, prices doubled in Myawady. I ride a motorcycle taxi so it will hurt my family,” said Naing Lin.

The owners who import petrol from Thailand have to pay 1.5 per cent for custom duty, 10 per cent for trade tax, 2 per cent for advanced tax and 5 per cent for income tax. They said taxes needed to be cut to reduce the burden on consumers.

Although they can import oil through illegal pipelines across the Moei River, most imports come through the official Myawady trade zone.

Thailand has oil trucks which can carry up to 40,000 litres but the Friendship Bridge can only support trucks carrying up to 14,000 litres. It was not enough for filling stations in Myawady, said the owners.

“We have imported petrol officially. We paid tax to import the petrol to Yangon. We have official documents. But if Thailand continues to ban the imports, we will have to carry petrol from Yangon to Myawady,” said Sae Than, who runs Dawna Yadanar Myay filling station.

Source: Eleven Myanmar

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