Petrol, diesel price rise paused a day after reaching new highs


New Delhi, July 6 (IANS) Oil marketing companies kept the retail price of petrol and diesel unchanged on Tuesday to analyse the global oil price movement before making further revisions.

Accordingly, petrol continued to be priced at Rs 99.86 a litre and diesel Rs 89.36 a litre in the national capital on Tuesday.

Across the country as well the fuel prices remained unchanged on Tuesday. The prices were last revised upwards on Monday when OMCs raised the petrol rates by up to 35 paise per litre while keeping diesel rates unchanged.

The price pause has come not before the fuel rates have reached new highs across the country through numerous increases in the last two months.

Starting from a price line of Rs 90.40 a litre on May 1, petrol is now priced at Rs 99.86 a litre in the national capital, rising by a sharp Rs 9.46 per litre in the last 67 days. Similarly, diesel prices in the capital also rose by Rs 8.63 per litre in the past two months to reach Rs 89.36 a litre in Delhi.

Though oil companies gave respite to consumers on Tuesday, the price pause has come after rates have been revised upwards in 32 out of 61 days between May and June to take the retail rates touch new highs across the country.

Officials in oil companies put the consistent increase in fuel prices to the development in global oil markets where both product and crude prices have been firming up for the past couple of months on demand rise amidst slowing of pandemic. However, a closer look at the fuel retail prices in India gives a picture that it is the high level of taxes that is keeping fuel rates higher even in times when global oil prices are firm.

Global crude oil price is now hovering just over $77 a barrel. It was over $ 80 a barrel in October 2018 and even the petrol prices hovered around Rs 80 a litre across the county. But, even with lower global oil prices now, petrol rates have hit a century and crossed it by a wider margin now in several parts of the country.

Officials said that the fuel prices might again rise in the coming days and the only way retail prices could be brought down in this period is by way of tax cuts by both the Centre and states.

The rise is also expected as oil cartel OPEC has failed to reach any agreement on raising production to meet the rising demand for oil.

Fuel prices are already touching new highs everyday. Petrol price is most expensive in Rajasthan’s Sri Ganganagar where it is now retailing at Rs 110.85. Even diesel in the city is priced at a high of Rs 102.33 a litre.

In the financial capital Mumbai, petrol price now stands at Rs 105.92 while diesel costs Rs 96.91, data available on Indian Oil Corporation’s website showed. In Chennai too, petrol has hit a century with pump prices being Rs 100.75 a litre.

With global crude prices also rising on a pick up demand and depleting inventories of world’s largest fuel guzzler — the US, retail prices of fuel in India are expected to firm up further in the coming days. The benchmark Brent crude reached a multi-year high-level of over $ 77 on ICE or Intercontinental Exchange.


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