Pradhan allays fears over oil price impact

Dharmendra Pradhan

Dharmendra Pradhan  

Union Minister of State for Petroleum and Natural Gas Dharmendra Pradhan said on Friday that there was no need for alarm over rising global oil prices as the steps taken by the government would cushion their impact.

Responding to fears that the crude prices crossing the $50 mark per barrel would hurt domestic consumers and the economy, Mr. Pradhan said, “I don't think there is any alarming situation. The government has consciously taken a decision to deregulate the market.”

For a robust economy such as India, it is necessary to deregulate the oil market, that is, link petroleum prices with the market, in the long-term interests of the consumer.

He was speaking to reporters after inaugurating the HP Green R&D Centre started by HPCL at Hoskote near Bengaluru. Mr. Pradhan also justified the recent increases in excise duty as being essential for the social sector. “'We have passed on 60 per cent of the reduction in crude prices to the consumer. Yes, we have saved some money, but this is to create a window to absorb losses whenever there is a steep hike in crude prices. We may open it in such a scenario.”

A startup fund of Rs. 300 crore was proposed to encourage new solutions in oil, gas and biofuels.

Mr. Pradhan also suggested that labs such as HPCL’s new one could explore new technologies that would convert municipal garbage and farm waste into energy.

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Printable version | Apr 9, 2020 2:42:06 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/karnataka/Pradhan-allays-fears-over-oil-price-impact/article15562788.ece

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