SURIGAO CITY (MindaNews / 7 Jan) – The plummeting oil prices worldwide has convinced the Surigao City Council to cut tricycle fare here by one peso.
Councilor Jose V. Begil Jr., chairperson of the Sangguniang Panlungsod’s committee on transportation, said there will be an adjustment in tricycle fare in the city due to the oil price rollback.
Begil told MindaNews that currently, regular passengers are paying P8 for the first two kilometers; students, senior citizens and persons with disability, P7; and elementary pupils and preschoolers, P5.
He said that after the ordinance’s publication in a newspaper, the fare reduction will then be effective, expectedly on the third week this month.
Aside from the P1 reduction in the first two kilometers, passengers will be paying 75 centavos per succeeding kilometer, Begil said.
Violators of the ordinance, Begil said, will be fined P200 for the first offense, P500 for the seconds offense, and P1,000 for the third offense.
Surigao City has 2,600 tricycles although only 2,100 of which could operate at any given time because of number coding, Begil said.
The councilor said the drop in the local petroleum products mirrors the falling global oil prices due to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries’ (OPEC) decision to maintain current production levels despite an estimated oversupply in the market of 1.5 to 2 million barrels daily.
“Oil prices have plunged since mid-2014, falling by more than $40 per barrel to a five-year low,” he added.
Groups of tricycle drivers in Surigao did not oppose the move, saying they have an agreement with Begil that once the rollback would reach P45 per liter, they are obliged to cut the fare by P1.
As of last night, gasoline here costs P41.05 to P41.50 per liter, while special gasoline costs from P43.10 to P43.75. Diesel, meanwhile, is in the P36.30 to P36.80 range.
Last October, gasoline had reached at the P55 to P59 level while diesel, from P45 to P48.
Commuters, meanwhile, are happy on the announced price reduction, saying they could save up to P4 a day.
“I ride the tricycle four times a day in going to school and back. I would save P4 a day, or a total of P20 a week,” said Lhord Peter dela Cerna, a college student of Saint Paul University.