Written Answers. - Oil Stocks Reserves.

Dermot Ahern

Ceist:

176 Mr. D. Ahern asked the Minister for Energy the minimum requirement on oil companies concerning holding a supply of stocks in reserve; the impact of these reserves on the price fluctuation of oil and other associated products; and if he will make a statement on the matter.

Under national legislation, Irish oil distribution companies are obliged to hold 80 days' stocks of petroleum products.

Changes in the price of controlled products (petrol and autodiesel) are determined by movements in the average spot price on the Rotterdam market in the previous month. Companies adjust the price of non-controlled products on a similar basis. While international reserve levels can play an important role in day to day trading on international spot markets, the absolute level of stocks held in reserve in Ireland has no impact on price adjustments under this system on a month-to-month basis.