The domestic retail price for RON 92 petrol, including value added tax, increased from 20,800 VND to 22,900 VND (0.99 USD to 1.09 USD) per litre at 4pm on Mar. 7, according to the Ministry of Finance (MoF).

Diesel prices also experienced a rise of 1,000 VND, from 20,400 VND to 21,400 VND per litre.

The ministry said it had lowered the import tax on petrol and oil from the current four to zero the same day.

The ministry said domestic dealers and distributors have suffered from low domestic retail prices, down against those from countries such as China , Laos and Cambodia .

It said the country was in dire need of petrol price adjustment.

The ministry called for an increase from 4,200 VND to 6,500 VND per litre dependent on gasoline type and tax.

It added that the hike included 13 to 41 percent of the adjustment which should have increased under Government Decree 84 to allow businesses to adjust petrol prices when those on the world market fluctuate.

According to ministerial information, the State budget last year decreased by 20 trillion VND (952 million USD) due to overspending on price stabilisation funds.

Before the price hike, many petrol stations had shut down temporarily or reduced sales volumes without "rational" reasons.

Vo Van Quyen, director of the Domestic Market Department under the Ministry of Industry and Trade said the ministry will monitor the market regularly to ensure sufficient supplies.-VNA