Deora to meet PM over oil losses | india | Hindustan Times
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Deora to meet PM over oil losses

Petroleum Minsiter Murli Deora will meet Manmohan to find a solution to the issue of huge losses suffered by public sector oil companies, reports Deepak Joshi.

india Updated: Nov 06, 2007 03:00 IST
Deepak Joshi

Petroleum Minsiter Murli Deora will meet Manmohan Singh on Wednesday to find a solution to the issue of huge losses suffered by public sector oil companies on account of selling key petroleum products below cost.

“I will be discussing the issue with the Prime Minister. He has invited delegates from Africa and I hope to discuss the issue of public sector oil marketing companies with him,” Deora said.

The oil companies are suffering a revenue loss of Rs 190 crore per day by selling petrol, diesel, kerosene and domestic liquefied petroleum gas below international price parity. This is expected to cross Rs 240 crore a day from this month.

The Indian basket of crude hovers around $85 per barrel. The prices of petrol and diesel were last reduced by Rs 2 and Re 1 per litre in February this year with the average price of crude around $55 per barrel.

Deora said the government does not want to burden the common man. “We can’t afford to let the oil companies suffer. We hope find a solution to the issue soon,” he added.

Sources said the government might opt for an excise duty cut on petrol and diesel. This may reduce the burden on marketing companies and enable the government to avoid raising the prices of motor fuels.

A marginal increase in prices can be considered only after elections in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh. Apart from this, the petroleum ministry is also exploring the option of raising the quantum of oil bonds to be issued by the finance ministry as well as raising the share of burden sharing by the upstream oil marketing companies—Oil and Natural Gas Corporation, Oil India Ltd. and GAIL (India) Ltd.