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PISTON urges more protests as oil prices surge for the fourth straight week

PISTON - OPH protest

The Marcos Jr regime has consistently failed to curb the power of the “Big Three” petroleum companies in the country. Despite inflation trending upward and rising cost of living causing widespread crisis, Shell, Caltex, and Petron continue to raise oil prices — the fourth consecutive increase in the past weeks. Despite deregulation 26 years ago, these companies have maintained significant control over up to 43% of the industry. Their oligopolistic control on the market has persisted even after the Oil Deregulation Law of 1998, and they have raked in megaprofits each year since.

The oil cartel routinely justifies price hikes by citing geopolitical tensions in the Middle East and between Russia and Ukraine. However, the Marcos regime actively colludes with them, further burdening the already suffering masses through VAT and excise taxes on petroleum products.

No amount of cover-up can conceal the fact that each price hike orchestrated by the oil industry players underscores a breakdown in the state’s duty to protect its citizens. As poverty and unemployment worsen and public trust erodes, the impact of imperialist globalization becomes increasingly evident.

PISTON calls on transport workers and commuters to stage militant protests, particularly during Marcos Jr’s upcoming SONA, demanding state control over the oil industry. No amount of “Bagong Pilipinas” rebranding can hide the fact that this regime has chosen to be apathetic to the demands of the people in the face of a worsening economic crisis.