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MANILA, Philippines -- (UPDATE - 3:22 p.m.) Pilipinas Shell and Seaoil announced Thursday that they are freezing the prices of its fuel products in areas affected by the widespread flooding that has struck Metro Manila and surrounding regions and called on other oil firms to follow suit.
Shell spokesman Roberto Kanapi said there will be no price increases in Metro Manila, Rizal, Bulacan, Pampanga, Bataan, Zambales, Sta. Cruz and Pagsanjan in Laguna, and Bacoor, Kawit, and Rosario in Cavite.
In a statement, Seaoil said its price freeze would take effect in the same areas but would also cover the whole provinces of Laguna and Cavite.
"We hope this initiative will help in a small way," Kanapi said.
Kanapi said they expect oil prices to increase in the world market this week.
"Certainly there will be a margin loss. That area (covered by the price freeze accounts for) about 50 percent of our sales,” he said.
“But we call on other players in the industry to help in any way they can" he added.
Meanwhile, Shell also asked the Metro Manila Development Authority to temporarily lift its truck ban over the next few days to allow the firm to delivery fuel to its gasoline stations.
Kanapi said the current supply remains stable “but we have to catch up.”
Sa ngayon stable pa raw ang suplay pero kailangan na ring lagyan para hindi maubusan.
Flooding in Pampanga, Bulacan, Zambales and Tarlac have forced between 33 to 50 Shell stations to shut down.
Kanapi said the company is working to ensure that the stations are safe and the quality of their fuel is assured before these are reopened.