Due to high operating costs, all Caltex gas stations will officially close at midnight from today on, ending what has been several years of 24-hour service, Caltex announced this week.
“Caltex Cambodia Limited has recently revised its operating hours for all Caltex petrol service stations in Cambodia after reviewing the current tariff for public utilities,” the company said in a statement.
Caltex spokesman Pich Chetra declined this week to say how much Caltex, a division of US petroleum giant Chevron, will likely save from the early closing of its approximately 30 stations.
Debashish Sanyal, finance and administration manager at rival petroleum company Total Gas, said Total is also reviewing the price of electricity’s impact on late night operating hours.
“With the rising price of electricity and of oil it is a concern,” he said, adding that Total does not expect to profit greatly from the Caltex decision.
Two of 20 Total stations will remain open all night-starting today, which will make them the only 24 hour stations in Cambodia.
Beginning this month, the Electricity Authority of Cambodia allowed Electricite du Cambodge to raise electricity prices in Phnom Penh by 11 percent for individuals and to begin charging small businesses $0.036 per kilowatt hour above distribution costs.
Ty Norin, director of the Electricity Authority of Cambodia, on Wednesday referred questions on the impact of rising electricity prices on Caltex’s 24-hour operation to Electricite du Cambodge.
Electricite du Cambodge Director General Tan Kim Vin referred questions to the Electricity Authority of Cambodia.
“The EAC sets the price and sent it to the government. We only carry out the policy,” he said.
Employees at the Norodom Boulevard Caltex station near Independence Monument said that early closing would not affect business as few customers arrived between midnight and 5 am.
The station has not had a midnight to 5 am service since a Sept 14 shooting when two employees were injured, staff said Wednesday, adding that the incident had not frightened them from working late night shifts.
“We do not know why they closed the stations at night, we were not scared,” one former night worker said.