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700 Big Rigs Roll Into Bangkok to Protest High Diesel Prices

In its “Truck Power Season 2” rally, the Land Transport Federation of Thailand deployed truckers to bring faces to the problems caused by rising fuel prices.
In its “Truck Power Season 2” rally, the Land Transport Federation of Thailand deployed truckers to bring faces to the problems caused by rising fuel prices.

About 700 big rigs rolled through Bangkok Tuesday to demand the government cap diesel-fuel prices at an unrealistic 25 baht.

The tractor-trailers filled four routes in the capital on their way to the Energy Ministry on Vibhavadi Rangsit Road for the protest.

In its “Truck Power Season 2” rally, the Land Transport Federation of Thailand deployed truckers to bring faces to the problems caused by rising fuel prices.

At the mobile Cabinet meeting today in Krabi, ministers approved 20 billion baht in funding to the State Oil Fund, which will be used to keep the retail price of diesel oil at 30 baht a liter or less.

This amount of funding approved is intended to cover a period of four months, after which the situation should return to normal, provided the global oil prices decrease.

The Cabinet has also ordered the Ministry of Transport to help increase logistics capacity using trains and long-distance buses, with military vehicles to be deployed if needed.

In a plea for truck operators not to stage more protests, Prime Minister Prayut Chan-o-cha explained that the pricing subsidy of diesel will cost 3 billion baht per month, while the balance of the Oil Fuel Fund is in the red.

The government had spent its State Oil Fund to help protect people from rising oil prices but the prices, however, depended on market mechanisms, he said.

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

The National News Bureau of Thailand contributed to this report.