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Samsung to draw up energy-saving measures on high oil prices

(Xinhua)

16:26, March 07, 2012

SEOUL, March 7 (Xinhua) -- Samsung Group, South Korea's largest conglomerate, said Wednesday that it will draw up energy-saving measures in a bid to brace for the possible surge in energy costs stemming from high oil prices. "Following the global economic downturn, oil prices continued to rise, weighing more on the South Korean economy. The possibility for surge in energy costs is very high," Samsung said in an e-mailed statement.

Prices of Dubai crude, South Korea's benchmark, topped 120 U.S. dollars a barrel recently, boosting fears that the nation's private consumption could be hampered by rising oil prices amid high inflation expectations that stayed above the upper ceiling of the Bank of Korea (BOK)'s inflation target band of 2-4 percent.

South Korea's economic growth rate would plunge by 1.9 percentage points if the Dubai crude average 150 dollars a barrel annually, according to the Samsung Economic Research Institute ( SERI). Under the same conditions, the consumer price inflation would go up 1.3 percentage points. Samsung noted that in the event of the average price of 150 dollars a barrel for this year, the group's energy costs would surge by around 20 percent than last year, aggravating its profitability. Samsung said that it will collect data necessary to draw up measures for energy savings by mid-March, adding that it will roll out its measures to improve energy efficiency by end-March.

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