Gulf Oil makes entrance with cheap gasoline
Chinese netizens hailed the opening of a gas station by US-based Gulf Oil in Guangzhou in South China’s Guangdong Province, as the company offered a good price of 5.26 yuan ($0.77) per liter, on top of the attendance of Manchester United soccer star Dwight Yorke, bikini girls and other attractions.
The price is about 1.6 yuan cheaper than what is offered by China’s two State-owned giants – China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC) and Sinopec – and it’s also 2.4 yuan cheaper than what is advised by the National Development and Reform Commission. The gas station was opened on Saturday.
The US oil major, with 117 years of history, joined competition with other global oil companies such as BP and Shell as China loosened investment restrictions on foreign-owned gasoline stations.
On Sina Weibo, netizens are calling for the company to quickly expand into their hometowns.
Jin Lei, an associate professor at the China University of Petroleum, told the Global Times on Thursday that private and foreign-owned gas stations could offer cheaper prices as their supplies are more flexible than those of the State-owned giants.
“They, unlike the CNPC and Sinopec, shoulder no responsibility in securing national energy security, and when they get cheap supply they can bring it to the market,” Jin said.
“But when the market is not good, they could also choose to shut down and not sell any gas,” noted Jin.