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Convoy heads to ministry, demand diesel price cut

Truckers parked their vehicles along four roads before driving in convoys to the Ministry of Energy on Vibhavadi Rangsit highway in Bangkok on Tuesday, renewing their call for the price of diesel to be capped at 25 baht per litre.

The move was organised by the Land Transport Federation of Thailand (LTFT).

The “Truck Power Season 2” plan was for 500-700 trucks to converge at the Ministry of Energy for a protest rally against high diesel prices.

The four routes planned for the convoys were:

1. Highway 32 – Phahon Yothin – Vibhavadi Rangsit – Ministry of Energy;
2. Laem Chabang seaport – Sukhumvit – KM15 on Bang Na-Trat highway;
3. KM 12 on Bang Na-Trat highway – Burapa Withee tollway – Ministry of Energy; and,
4. Kanchanapisek road from Phutthamonthon in Nakhon Pathom – Borom Ratchachonnanee road – Charan Sanitwong – Vibhavadi Rangsit – Ministry of Energy.

According to the plan, the trucks were to start moving at 10am along the four routes to the Ministry of Energy, where a rally would be held until 5pm.

Apichart Prairungruang, the LTFT chairman, reiterated the federation’s demand for the government to cap the diesel price at 25 baht per litre by cutting back the excise tax on diesel.

If the government failed to meet the demand by the end of November, transport costs would be raised by 10% from Dec 1, he said.

Deputy Prime Minister and Energy Minister Supattanapong Punmeechaow, who is in Krabi for a cabinet meeting, said in response that the government could only cap the price of high-speed diesel at 30 baht per litre.

He said the government would seek to keep the prices below 30 baht per litre, adding that cooperation had been sought from the private sector and state agencies.

On Tuesday, the price of B7 diesel at pumps in Bangkok was 29.74 baht/litre, B20 29.49 baht/litre and B20 premium diesel 34.96 baht/litre.

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