Fuel prices near pre-COVID days

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The two gas companies in the CNMI, Mobil and Shell, have again increased their fuel price by 10 cents, less than two months after the last gas price increase on June 14. (Krizel Tuazon)

The upward trend in fuel prices continues after over a monthlong standstill, with fuel prices nearing pre-COVID-19 days.

Last Monday, Mobil Oil Mariana Islands Inc. took the lead again in the fifth gas price hike this year, raising the price on their Extra and Supreme fuel. Their Extra fuel is now 5-cents away from pre-pandemic prices.

Gas prices went up 10 cents from $3.68 for a gallon of Extra fuel to $3.78 per gallon, while the Supreme fuel went from $4.13 per gallon to $4.23. Mobil’s diesel went up to $4.06 per gallon.

Shell Marianas followed suit last Monday night, also raising their prices by 10 cents.

The lowest price of fuel in the CNMI before the government shutdown as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic was at $3.83.

A 27-year-old motorist from Capital Hill described the gas price hike as “nothing new anymore” since the economy is starting to get back on its feet.

“Gas has always been pricey in the Marianas, so it’s nothing new. Of course it went down right when the government shut down but I think we’re trying to get back to normal and it’s expected that gas will too” he said.

Another motorist from Sadog Tasi said that she didn’t even notice gas prices changing because of everything that’s been going on. “I think there are more issues to worry about, like thousands have yet to receive their Pandemic Unemployment Assistance. I guess gas prices going up isn’t really noticeable amidst all of this,” she said.

Kimberly Bautista | Reporter
Kimberly Albiso Bautista has covered a wide range of news beats, including the community, housing, crime, and more. She now covers sports for the Saipan Tribune. Contact her at kimberly_bautista@saipantribune.com.
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