Bangladesh Petroleum Dealers, Distributors, Agents and Petrol Pump Owners' Association have decided to postpone their strike till 12 September.
They will go on strike from 13 September if the Ministry of Power, Energy and Mineral Resources fails to provide any solution to their demands till then, said the association's President Mohammad Nazmul Haque during a press briefing at the Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation office at the capital's Karwanbazar on Monday.
Previously, the Bangladesh Petroleum Dealers, Distributors, Agents and Petrol Pump Owners' Association had called for increasing their commission to 7% on sales of fuel oils. They had also threatened to go on strike everyday from dawn to 11pm starting 31 August, if their demands are not met.
In 2013, fuel sales commission was set at 4.75% for octane and petrol, and 3.22% for diesel, pointed out Mohammad Nazmul Haque.
"Since 2014, we have been calling for increasing the commission to 7%. But the demand was not met. Rather, our commission was reduced after the increase in fuel oil prices on 5 August. The commission has been reset at 3.78% for petrol and octane, and 2.56% for diesel," he added.
The pump owners also demanded the commission on fuel sales should be done on a percentage basis of fuel oil prices, and regular monitoring and drives to check weight manipulation at pumps must not be conducted without a representative from the BPC or a distribution company.
Their other demands included that only BPC, the energy ministry, and distribution companies will be allowed to check the documents of petrol pumps, the lease fee of the Department of Roads and Highways should be determined at a reasonable rate, tank-lorry document inspection should be at the depot-gates only, and a separate parking stand and counter for tank-lorry drivers should be ensured.
During the same press briefing on Monday, BPC Chairman ABM Azad said, fuel pump owners have questioned the validity of different mobile courts conducted by Bangladesh Standards and Testing Institution and the Directorate of National Consumers' Right Protection. They complained that such inspections hamper their activities.
However, since the companies are licensed under the BPC they have jurisdiction to conduct the mobile courts but there is information gaps between the organisations, said the BPC chairman.
Only an inter-ministerial meeting can address these issues and find a solution, according to ABM Azad.
He also gave the same solution in case of different agencies verifying documents of the fuel pumps.
Regarding the fuel pumps owners' demand that there is no need for underground tank calibration ABM Azad said that the underground tanks must be calibrated every five years according to the BPC rules and the owners must comply.