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Panel favours single regulator for energy, transport

india Updated: Jan 09, 2007 16:27 IST
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Planning Commission on Tuesday warned that sector-specific regulators could become "tension points" between them and the ministries and said there should be a common regulator for transport and energy sectors.

There was no harm in having a regulator for the entire energy sector but having regulatory bodies for each sector would be unviable as they would become tension points between them and the concerned ministries, Planning Commission Deputy Chairman Montek Singh Ahluwalia said at a function in New Delhi.

"We at the Planning Commission are thinking on having a common but independent regulator for energy and transport sectors," Ahluwalia said.

Though the plan panel has not finalised its suggestions in this connection, yet consultation with industry bodies were on to elicit their views, he said.

"We haven't formulated our views, but have consulted the industries in the matter," Ahluwalia said.

In its Integrated Energy Policy, the Commission favoured a single regulator for oil, gas and coal to ensure a defined pricing mechanism for sensitive fuel items.

Official sources said the plan panel has already been toying with the idea of having a 'super regulator' for the energy and transport sector having all encompassing powers.

The Commission has been able to ensure a broad consensus at a recent meeting of the Prime Minister's Energy Coordination Committee. "The government is seriously concerned that proliferation of regulatory bodies could fuel confusion in various quarters," sources said.

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