Vietnam cuts gas prices as post-storm aid

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Vietnam's biggest fuel retailer Petrolimex cut gasoline prices Monday following a Ministry of Finance order to help storm victims cope with the devastation of typhoon Haiyan and other storms.

The price of 92-RON, the most popular gasoline variety, has been cut by VND250 per liter to VND23,630 (US$1.12).

The ministry ordered local fuel traders to cut gasoline prices by at least VND241, or 1 percent, in order to help decrease difficulties for consumers who have been affected by several recent storms.

The minimal decrease equals the VND41 by which the previous retail price had exceeded the official so-called "base price," which is set by the state and takes into account input costs and profits, plus VND200 per liter taken from the state gasoline industry's "rainy day reserve."

Local traders use the base price to calculate their retail prices.

92-RON prices have gone down by 3.8 percent since the all-time peak of VND24,570 set in mid-July.

Petrolimex also decreased the price of 95-RON by VND250 to VND24,380.

Typhoon Haiyan, one of the strongest storms ever recorded in the world's history, hit northern Vietnam early Monday morning after leaving trail of destruction, suffering and a reported 10,000 dead in the devastated central Philippines.

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The storm left the Vietnam the same day it hit after causing 14 deaths.

Vietnam has been hit by more than 10 storms this year.

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