The Korea Herald


Independent gas stations to adopt common brand


Published : Sept. 15, 2011 - 19:41

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Independent gas stations could start operating under a common brand as early as next year, the association of independent gas stations said Thursday.

Independent gas stations can sell fuel produced by any of the country’s refiners, as opposed to being tied to a refiner such as GS Caltex or S-Oil.

As such establishments are able to sell at lower prices, the government has been drawing up support measures for independent gas stations as part of its plans to control fuel prices.

According to the Korea National Oil Corp., gasoline prices at independent outlets averaged 1,911.93 won ($1.70) per liter Thursday, while the overall average stood at 1,943.22 won per liter.

The association, set up on Sept. 1, is also said to work on setting up loyalty points scheme with major credit card operators.

“We have been unable to make preparations due to the Chuseok holidays, but the plan is to operate a shared-pole in autumn,” chief of independent gas stations Ham Jae-duk was quoted as saying by a local news agency. Ham, a former chairman of the Korea Oil Station Association, is the first chairman of the new association of independent gas stations.

Ham said that more than 300 of the 340 or so independent gas stations are expected to join the association, and that with sufficient government support such establishments will be able to help stem the rise in prices.

Support measures reported to be under consideration include subsidizing the 1.2 million won annual fee for taking part in the Korea Institute of Petroleum Management’s fuel quality certification program.

By Choi He-suk (