Petroleum Prices Touch New Heights After Fresh Hike

The government has yet again increased the prices of petroleum products by up to Rs 12 per liter, creating another problem for the people who are suffering from inflation.

According to the details, a notification issued by the Ministry of Finance said that the rise in the price of oil in the global market to $85 per barrel was the reason for increasing the prices of petroleum products. The notification said that the price of petrol has been increased by Rs 10.49 per liter and diesel by Rs12.44 per liter for the next 16 days.

After the price hike, petrol will now be available to the public at Rs 137.79 per liter while high speed diesel will be available at Rs 134.48 per liter.

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Along with petrol and high speed diesel, the price of kerosene has been increased by Rs 10.95 per liter and light diesel oil by Rs 8.84 per liter. After this increase, kerosene has become Rs 110.26 per liter while light diesel oil has become Rs 108.35 per liter.

It may be recalled that in the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (OGRA) summary, the government had indicated the possibility of increasing the prices of petroleum products by up to Rs 9.00. Sources had said that OGRA has been strictly instructed to keep its price proposals confidential as the government may have to go ahead with its calculations to increase the prices so as to reduce the petroleum levy. The loss of income could be made up gradually.

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A government official told media that based on the current tax rate, import price and depreciation of the rupee, OGRA had estimated an increase of Rs 5.5 per liter in the price of petrol and Rs 9 per liter in the price of high speed diesel. In addition, the prices of kerosene and light diesel oil were likely to increase by Rs 3 to 5.

The official said the main reason for the rise in prices was the loss of the exchange rate and the slight impact of international oil prices. He added that the government could raise prices for consumers by slightly increasing the tax rate to ensure the successful completion of the sixth review and the resumption of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) program to achieve nearly  $1 billion.

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