Vietnam to inspect pricing policies at gas distributors

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The Ministry of Finance will review pricing policies and tax payments at six fuel distributors beginning at the end of this month, new website VnExpress reported Thursday.

The inspection, expected to last through early July, will focus on price registration and input costs, the report said.

Inspectors will also check whether the distributors have paid higher commissions to retailers than allowed.

The companies include PV Oil and Petec, which are both subsidiaries of state-owned oil and gas group PetroVietnam, and Vinapco, the fuel trader of national carrier Vietnam Airlines.

Vietnam's largest fuel trader Petrolimex is not on the list. The State Audit has announced plans to look into the company this year, VnExpress said.

The Finance Ministry's inspection was announced after it cut petroleum retail prices for the second time this month. The price of 92-RON gasoline, the most commonly used fuel grade in Vietnam, was lowered by 2.6 percent to VND22,700 (US$1.09) a liter on Wednesday.

Vietnam last cut petroleum prices on May 9, a long-anticipated move that consumers did not respond well to. They said the cut was too small despite a sharp decline in global oil prices.

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