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Fuel reserve too small for safety: industry ministry

By Anh Minh   August 12, 2022 | 11:45 pm PT
Fuel reserve too small for safety: industry ministry
A man holds a gasoline nozzle at a fuel station in Ho Chi Minh City. Photo by VnExpress/Quynh Tran
Vietnam’s fuel reserves are too meager to meet actual demand, and a large increase is needed to ensure fuel security, the Ministry of Industry and Trade has warned.

The country maintains a reserve of 370,000 cubic meters, which translates into 6.5 days’ consumption, and this is too low, it said in a recent report.

The fuel is kept at 24 locations by the country’s biggest fuel distributors since the government does not have its own storage.

For the last five years Vietnam has never needed to use this reserve, but the ministry cautioned about unpredictable and urgent regional and global developments.

It wants to quadruple the reserve into a month’s requirement by 2025.

Fuel distributors are required to maintain stocks to meet 20 days’ demand.

But in January-February this year, when one of the country’s two refineries had to cut production due to a cash crunch, they were not maintaining the 20-day supply and this led to a shortage in the market, the ministry said.

Gasoline prices surged by nearly 38 percent for the year by June to VND32,870 ($1.40) per liter.

It has now dropped to the same level as in January, VND24,660.

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