The Ministry of Finance decided to lift the import tax on all kinds of petrol on Feb. 22 to prevent petrol dealers from raising their retail prices, according to a Ministry of Finance's circular issued on Feb. 21.

The previous tax rate of 4 percent was imposed for nearly two months.

Under Circular 25/2012/TT/BTC, an import tax on diesel oil will also be cut from the current 5 percent to 3 percent. However, the ministry will keep the import tax rate on lubricants oil unchanged at 5 percent.

Besides the tax adjustment, petrol and oil retailers will be also allowed to use money from the Price Stabilisation Fund to offset part of their losses, the ministry said.

The ministry said it made the move to stabilise the domestic petrol and oil market in a context of rising oil prices in the global market over the past few weeks. Imported oil prices in Singapore , the main source of Vietnam 's imported petrol and oil, have risen sharply for the past 20 days. The oil prices reached 130 USD per barrel, up nearly 6 percent against January.

Domestic petrol retailers said that they were suffering a loss of more than 1,000 VND per litre.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT) and the Ministry of Science and Technology had agreed on a proposal to the Prime Minister for a ban on the processing and distribution of A83 second-rate petrol in the domestic market, said director of the MoIT's Domestic Market Department Vo Van Quyen.

Quyen said if the proposal is approved, the ministries will soon publicise detailed itineraries for the prohibition and the new rules for producers.

The country currently has only three producers, Saigon Petro, PV Oil and Nam Viet Co, churning out the second-rate petrol, which negatively impact the environment. - VNA