Inquirer.net : Russia to ‘extend helping hand’ to PH amid high oil prices — envoy

13 June 2022

By Neil Arwin Mercado | Inquirer.net

MANILA, Philippines — The Russian government is “ready to cooperate” and “extend our helping hands” to the Philippines to address the high oil prices in the country, a Russian diplomat said Monday.

Russian Ambassador to the Philippines Marat Pavlov said this following his courtesy call on President-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. at the latter’s headquarters in Mandaluyong City.

“I repeat that in this turbulent period, we are ready to cooperate with the Filipino side and to extend our helping hands to satisfy the needs in sources of energy,” Pavlov said in a press briefing.

“We decided to continue our discussion a little bit further,” the ambassador added.

The Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) earlier approved a P1 provisional fare hike, bringing the minimum fare in public utility jeepneys (PUJ) in Metro Manila, Region 3 (Central Luzon), and Region 4 (Calabarzon) to P10.

The provisional fare increase comes after various transport organizations lodged their petitions in the midst of the many rounds of oil price hikes that were triggered, among others, by the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

According to the LTFRB, while it recognizes the “plight” of the commuting public every time an increase in commodity prices such as public transport occurs, “it cannot be insensitive to the clamor and plight of the PUV operators and drivers who are responsible [for] ensuring a steady supply of public transport services.”

For perspective, diesel prices in February 2017 were at around P28.40 to P34.30 per liter. However, as of June 7 this year, diesel prices were at around P74 to P87.80 per liter.