Alternate day fuel price revision rolls on, pause after hike a day ago

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Alternate day fuel price revision rolls on, pause after hike a day ago

New Delhi: Under the new found preference for revising fuel prices every alternate day, the Oil marketing companies (OMCs) kept the pump price of petrol and diesel unchanged on Wednesday.

Accordingly, the price of petrol continues to remain at Tuesday level of Rs 92.85 a litre and diesel Rs 83.51 per litre in Delhi.

Across the country as well the petrol and diesel prices remained static on Wednesday but its actual retail prices varied depending on the level of local levies in respective states.

The OMCs are following the practice of changing petrol and fuel rates every alternate day rather than undertaking changes on a daily basis for past few days. Accordingly, the Wednesday’s price hold came after there was an increase in prices on Tuesday. There was no price increase on Monday as well.

Also, on Sunday while petrol and diesel prices were raised by 24 and 27 paise per litre respectively, there was no price revision on Saturday. Similarly, while fuel prices were raised on Friday, it remained unchanged in the previous day.

“It seems oil companies are giving a sense of relief to consumers as fuel prices are not being raised on a daily basis. But still prices are not actually falling but being raised on every alternate day too this month,” said a oil sector expert not willing to be named.

He said that the practice of daily price revision, started after deregulation of petrol and diesel prices few years back. This has now been done away by OMCs for past several months giving clear indication that administrative price regime is still working for the sector.

Under daily price revision, OMCs revised petrol and diesel prices every morning benchmarking retail fuel prices to a 15-day rolling average of global refined products’ prices and dollar exchange rate. However, in a market where fuel prices need to be increased successively, alternate day price revision seems to be the flavour.

It is worth noting that with 10 price increase in May, the retail price of regular petrol has already reached over Rs 99 a litre in Mumbai. Petrol prices are already over Rs 100 per litre in several cities in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Maharashtra. Premium petrol has been hovering above that level for quite some time now.

Petrol prices have increased by Rs 2.30 a litre in Delhi in May in the 10 increases so far. Similarly, diesel prices have risen by Rs 2.78 per litre in capital this month.

IANS had written earlier that OMCs may begin increasing the retail price of petrol and diesel post state elections as they were incurring losses to the tune of Rs 2-3 per litre by holding the price line despite higher global crude and product prices.

With global crude prices at around $69 a barrel mark, OMCs may have to revise fuel prices upwards again if there is any further firming up.

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