The government is planning to rationalise multiple prices of natural gas in the country to make fuel costs uniform for all consumers, Oil Secretary S. Sundareshan said.

“The challenge before us is to rationalise pricing gas from all sources (so that they) are similarly priced,” he said at the International Symposium on Fuels and Lubricants here.

The Oil Ministry is examining a uniform domestic price for natural gas, which is now sold at anywhere between USD 1 and USD 5.73 per million British thermal units, depending on the source.

At present, the government fixes the price of gas produced from blocks given on nomination to state-run Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) and Oil India (OIL), while for others it is determined in line with production sharing contracts.

Gas from fields given to ONGC and OIL on nomination basis was sold at about USD 1.8 per mmBtu, while in the North-east, it was priced at USD 1-1.2 per mmBtu.

Prices range from USD 3.5 to 5.73 per mmBtu for gas from the blocks that were awarded before the introduction of New Exploration and Licensing Policy (NELP) in 1999, while Reliance Industries’ eastern offshore KG D6 field gas is priced at USD 4.20 per mmBtu.

Under consideration is pooling or averaging out all prices so that all consumers get gas at the same price irrespective of the source, he said.

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