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Govt may issue more oil bonds: Deora

Petroleum Minister Murli Deora said the government may help public sector oil companies by issuing more oil bonds in case oil price rises.

business Updated: Jan 31, 2009 18:54 IST

Petroleum Minister Murli Deora on Saturday said the government may help public sector oil companies by issuing more oil bonds in case oil price rises.

"In case the oil price goes up and in case the subsidy (to oil PSUs) increases, there may be issuing of more oil bonds," Deora told reporters here.

He was replying to a question whether there would be further issuance of bonds to oil marketing companies (OMCs) after Petroleum Secretary R S Pandey had said on January 29 that more bonds might be issued.

To help oil PSUs tide over under-recoveries on sale of subsidised fuel, the government has approved issuance of oil bonds worth Rs 60,967 crore.

Deora said it was unlikely that there would be yet another price cut on petroleum products. "I cannot say (if there would be further fuel price cuts), but I do not think it will happen."

The second round of fuel price cut in less than two months has brought down rates of petrol, diesel and domestic LPG to less than rates prevailing in June 2006, the minister said.

Admitting to a delay in implementing a fuel price cut, Deora said, "Yes, I agree, there was a delay of 4-5 weeks, but we have succeeded in keeping our commitment of reducing fuel prices in spite of the opposition we were facing."

He, however, clarified that the two tranches of price cuts had nothing to do with the elections.