The burden of Petrol Taxi Drivers due to the Rocket of Petrol Price

11 October 2018

Recently, the exchange rate for USD to Myanmar Kyat hit the highest rate of MMK 1,597 on 21st September, 2018, according to Central Bank of Myanmar. At the same time, the fuel price has also increased and it is a great burden for daily workers earning MMK. Especially, the drivershave experienced the consequence of the higher price of fuel.

Even though, the USD exchange rate in Myanmar has now relatively dropped from MMK 1,597 to 15, 05 on 9th of October, 2018, the fuel price seems not to fall down yet.

For that, the major reasons could be the high exchange rates for exports earning dollars and the high fuel price internationally.

Taxi service driver, Ko Myo Min from Hlaing Tharyar, Yangon ,explained that how the increase of fuel price effects on his income.

It affects brutally on my income because all the money I should receive goes to the petrol station. In the past, it was over MMK 400 per liter, and then over MMK 800 per liter for such a long period. Now, it has dramatically increased to more than MMK 1,000 per liter.

I could save almost MMK 20,000 a day before but now it is hard to even receive MMK 7,000/ 8,000 a day.

Speaking of asking for more taxi charges, He said, no one is willing to pay that amount that we asked for over the reason of increase amount of fuel price. So, the charge is the same as the previous amount before the increase. For example, if it is MMK 3,000 before for a distance, it is MMK 3,000 now.

As a driver on the concern of increase price of fuel, he remarked that, the lower the price, the better it is, so that the income will go up, and then we can save more money for a family.


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Source: Max Energy (Ahlone, Yangon)

The actual fuel price has increased dramatically recently in the month of October, 2018. Starting from October, MMK 80 has added to the actual price. 2 months ago, in August, it was around MMK 900 in every fuelprices but later month, in September, MMK 75 had added to the actual price.

The general fuel price is even much higher in remote areas of Myanmar due to the far distance.

In response to high fuel prices and environmental concerns, Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) is starting to be used in replace of petrol, which is a lot cheaper than the petrol.

Ko Zaw Naing Win, CNG used driver from Thamine, Yangon, of 5 years working experience of taxi service explained his concern on the rise of gas price.

“It is normal that the gas used driver will ask relatively higher than the normal price because of the increase of fuel price. But for us, Compressed Natural Gas driver, there is no such thing like the sudden low or high of CNG price. The CNG price is stable, for the time-being, which is MMK 300 per liter.”

He explained some of the advantages of using CNG. He said, it is much cheaper. If there is no passenger, we can go around and look for passenger but for gas driver, they can’t go around due to the higher cost of energy.

Not just the good side of CNG, but there is one negative issue that CNG driver has to wait too much amount of times at the station to refill the CNG.

“We have to wait on long queue for almost 1 hour to refill the gas depending on the numbers of cars because of fewer numbers of CNG station in Yangon. One more problem is that CNG is only available in Yangon region,” said Ko Zaw Naing Win.