Gasoline and diesel prices could go down if T&T decides to use methanol as five per cent its fuel mixture.
This was revealed by Vishard Chandool, manager technical and corporate services Methanol Holdings Trinidad Ltd, who told a methanol conference yesterday that the country could save as much as a quarter billion dollars on an annual basis if the country decides to blend five per cent of its fuel with methanol.
This savings, he said, can then be passed onto motorists.
Methanol Holdings along with its parent company Proman partnered with the Methanol Institute to hold the conference yesterday at the Hyatt Regency.
The conference was held to discuss the potential of the use of methanol as a fuel in vehicles.
Panellists explained that Trinidad and Tobago is one of the largest exporters of methanol in the world and exports nearly all of its methanol while it is now an importer of fuel for both local consumption and export to the Caricom market.
The panel which included representatives from China, Israel and the Methanol Institute insisted that the modern vehicles are already manufactured to allow for alcohol mixed in the fuel and pointed to China in which as much as 15 per cent of its fuel is methanol.
The conference was told that methanol prices have always trended lower than gasoline and there was nothing that suggests the trend would change.
It is the lower price for methanol that favours lower gasoline and diesel prices at the pump.
They also noted that the worries about the corrosiveness of methanol was not an issue and that it will be relatively inexpensive to make the switch at the pumps.
The institute plans to engage stakeholders including the Government and the wider public on the issue.
Reporter: Curtis Williams