The Myanmar Petroleum Trade Association (MPTA) will submit a proposal to the Ministry of Electricity and Energy asking it to reduce the sulphur content from 500 ppm (parts per million) to 10 ppm in diesel fuel, said Dr Win Myint, secretary of MPTA.
“Once we get the approval from our association members in the upcoming meeting, we will submit the request within a month,” he added.
Many countries keep the content of sulphur in ultra low diesel or premium diesel to minimise the fuel’s environmental impact.
“The consumption of high sulphur diesel results in high level of pollutants. The number of vehicles on the country’s roads is increasing, prompting us to call
for this proposal to prevent severe levels of air pollution,” said Dr. Win Myint.
Previously, the country consumed diesel having 5,000 ppm of sulphur, and later reduced the level to 500 ppm. Premium diesel with 10 ppm is also imported and distributed in the domestic market. The percentage of those consuming this premium diesel has increased from 10 to 30 per cent.
Some 90 per cent of the fuel oil consumption in the country is dependent on the foreign market, while only 10 per cent is produced locally.
“There is only a small price gap of Ks20 between 500 ppm and 10 ppm per litre. This is why we want to scale down the sulphur level to 10 ppm, as it will not affect the market. In addition to this, it will also help reduce the environmental impact. We will conduct publicity campaigns to encourage the public to consume premium diesel,” said Dr Win Myint.
There are some 70 fuel oil importing companies in the country, along with 2,000 fuel stations, with the fuel mostly imported through Singapore. Some 200,000 tonnes of gasoline and 400,000 tonnes of diesel are imported into the country every month.
Gasoline consumption in Myanmar increased six fold over the past five years. Nevertheless, diesel consumption does not show a significant increase, and even declined slightly.
May Thet Hnin