Filipino govt. looks to lock down diesel

The Philippine government is considering a limited oil subsidy program to help diesel consumers. Diesel is the fuel of choice for the country's mass transport system.

President Gloria Arroyo has ordered the country's Department of Transportation and Communication and the Department of Energy to conduct a thorough study on the capability of the Philippine government to subsidise petroleum prices in order to keep a lid on the price of diesel.

The Philippines government is currently observing austerity measures designed to keep the national budget within its target ceiling of US$3.69 billion. Economists at the Asian Development Bank have indicated that the measures will arrest a five-year-old fiscal crisis but the deficit could still threaten economic stability in the country.

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