The government has resumed its fuel marking operation in line with the new program aimed to curb oil smuggling in the country.
This time, the marking activity involves 11.6 million liters of Mogas Base Fuel onboard MT Sichem Mumbai at the import terminal facility of Unioil Petroleum in Mariveles, Bataan last Sunday.
The dosing of the petroleum products was done by adding the official marker inside storage tanks where the petroleum products stored.
The procedure, according to Customs deputy commissioner for enforcement Teddy Raval, follows the commencement of marking activities on petroleum products of Insular Oil Corp. in Subic last week.
To date, a total of 94.9 million liters of fuel have already been marked at Unioil since its initial marking on Oct. 22.
“This is equivalent to collected duties and taxes amounting to P719 million,” said Raval, the chief implementing officer of the Fuel Marking Program.
Raval said that oil firms who have yet to have their fuel marked are highly encouraged to work with concerned agencies to avoid unwanted prosecution.
By Feb. 3, 2020, nationwide testing of fuel in the retail side as well as enforcement actions will commence.
“Gasoline, diesel and kerosene found to be unmarked will be seized, and penalties will be imposed against those storing, transporting, importing or peddling unmarked fuel,” said Raval.
With only three months away from the nationwide testing, the bureaus of Customs, and Internal Revenue, the Department of Finance in coordination with the Switzerland-based SICPA and SGS Philippines continuous to work closely with oil companies hastening the marking of petroleum products before the deadline.
The government advised retailers to only buy and sell marked fuel “to avoid violation and possible penalties including criminal prosecution.”
The Customs bureau under the administration of Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero is also working closely with oil companies in the country to fast-track the marking of petroleum products before they are sold to the market.
Three oil firms—Seaoil Philippines Inc., Unioil Petroleum and Insular Oil Co.—have so far complied with the new policy.