Union Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Murli Deora on Monday ruled out putting in place a dual pricing mechanism for diesel as of now and said the Ministry was working on subsidy management of petroleum products.
“We are working on a subsidy mechanism as it is very difficult to implement dual pricing of diesel,” Mr. Deora said at the sidelines of Petrotech 2010 at The Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI). “Why should the government provide a subsidy of Rs. 3 per litre on diesel for people who ride in Mercedes and other expensive automobiles,” he asked?
He said with India importing about 70 per cent of its crude oil requirements, high prices in the international markets, coupled with a administered price mechanism, has led to continued under-recoveries on the sale of petrol, diesel, LPG (domestic) and kerosene. “Over the years, the fiscal implication of the burden of fuel subsidies was acute, thereby making imperative for the government to take the bold, though politically sensitive, decision to decontrol the price of petrol and decontrol pricing of diesel in due course of time,” he remarked.
Mr. Deora said the effort of the government has been to provide energy security through enhanced production of oil and natural gas, increased foreign and domestic investment in the sector, growth of public and private sector institutions across the value chain, phenomenal growth in the refining capacity, export of value added petroleum products (the highest foreign exchange earner), creation of huge network of retail outlets and LPG distributorships covering about 120 million customers, creation of a vast petroleum pipeline infrastructure, outward investments to acquire assets abroad and nurturing high quality professionals.
He said the government has set up the Rajiv Gandhi Institute of Petroleum Technology for providing high quality education in the field of petroleum engineering and management.
The facilities at this Institute have been made available to other countries also, especially to the developing ones.
Keywords: diesel prices