Refilling a non-subsidised LPG will cost Nu 815 and doesn’t require the LPG card or a coupon number

To make enough Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG) available in the country, the Department of Trade (DoT) in collaboration with oil distributers launched non-subsidised LPG yesterday.

More than 70,000 non-subsidised LPG cylinders will now be available in the country.

A subsidised LPG costs Nu 537 for a refill. In Thimphu refilling a non-subsidised LPG will cost Nu 815.

Chief Trade Officer at DoT, Rinchen Lhazom, said that the amount to refill a non-susbsidised LPG would differ for different locations due to dissimilar transport charges. “The price difference is Nu 278 for refilling and unlike subsidised LPG, non-subsidised LPG will not require customer card or an e-coupon for refill. The customer can have as many non-subsidised LPG cylinders as needed any time.”

When buying a subsidised LPG, Nu 1,450 is paid for security deposit. For a non-subsidised LPG, a security deposit of Nu 1,650 is required. “If a person surrenders his or her subsidised LPG cylinder, he or she will be refunded the security deposit. The customer will then need to pay Nu 200 extra for a non-subsidised LPG cylinder,” Rinchen Lhazom said.

Today, 70,000 gas cylinders, which is about 1,000MT of non-subsidised LPG was distributed to four thromdes. Bhutan receives about 49,300 subsidised LPG cylinders, about 700MT monthly.

Economic affairs minister Leki Dorji said that although LPG was available in the country, it was not enough for people in rural areas.

The shortage, he said was also because people kept more than two cylinders at home, which was also risky during times of disaster. “The amount is not high and people who can afford a non-subsidised LPG should buy them. If they do that, we can provide subsidised LPG cylinders to rural areas.”

He said that the ministry in writing would also request embassies and government departments to use non-subsidised LPG.

Targeted for people in urban areas, the non-subsidised LPG is today available only in four thromdes. Non-subsidised LPG will be made available in other dzongkhags in future.

Rinchen Lhazom said that the demand for LPG in rural areas have increased with roads and availability of market. “They are aware of harmful effects of using firewood for cooking. They are shifting towards a better alternative for cooking.”

The use of non-subsidised LPG will be recorded by DoT through three Bhutan Oil Distributers in Thimphu.

Phurpa Lhamo