The price of petrol is set to fall for the fourth time in less than two months — by Rs. 2 to Rs. 2.50 per litre (including value added tax or VAT) this time.
The cut may come into effect by the end of April if the present trend of the Indian rupee strengthening against the dollar — combined with a steep fall in international crude oil prices — continues for one more week, say oil company sources.
At present, petrol costs Rs. 66.09 per litre in the Capital. The price was reduced by Rs. 2.40 on March 16, Rs. 1 on April 2 and Rs. 1.20 on April 16, the total reduction being Rs. 4.60 in a month.
State-owned oil companies confirmed the possibility of the cut. “The fall in the price of petrol is directly linked to the global price trend and the rupee-dollar equation. As it is expected that the downtrend in global oil and fuel prices would continue for the next few days, we will pass on the entire benefit to consumers,” said a senior official on the management of an oil company.
The basket of crude oil that India imports cost $106 a barrel on March 16 and is hovering around $98 a barrel at present. The rupee is also strengthening against the dollar at around Rs. 54 per US dollar.
Diesel prices, however, will continue to be hiked by an average of 50 paise per month for the next 15 months to do away with the subsidy of around Rs. 6.50 a litre.