Oil companies effect steep increase in petrol, diesel prices

Oil companies effect steep increase in petrol, diesel prices

New Delhi, February 20, 2021

Petrol and diesel prices have begun to pinch consumers harder with oil marketing companies (OMCs) reserving the weekend for effecting the steepest hike in the last several months.

Accordingly, the price of petrol and diesel were raised by 39 paise and 37 paise per litre, respectively, in Delhi on Saturday.

With this increase, petrol is now priced at Rs 90.58 and diesel at Rs 80.97 per litre in the national capital.

At this price in Delhi, petrol has breached the Rs 90 per litre-mark across all metros and in all major cities of the country. In fact, retail price of petrol has crossed the Rs 100 a litre-mark in several cities of Maharashtra, Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan. These states also have among the highest level of local levies on petroleum products in the country.

In the last 12 days (since February 9), the price has gone up by Rs 3.63 per litre for petrol and by Rs 3.84 per litre for diesel.

Across the country as well the surge in fuel prices ranged from 35-40 paise per litre, depending on the level of local taxes on the two petroleum products.

In Mumbai, petrol prices are, at Rs 97 a litre, just Rs 3 short of the three-digit mark. Diesel prices in the city are at Rs 88.06 a liture.

In all other metros, petrol is over Rs 90 a litre while diesel is well over Rs 80 a litre. Premium petrol has crossed Rs 100 per litre in several cities of Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra a few days back.

The increase on Saturday has followed the firm global oil prices (both product and crude). Interestingly, the crude price has softened marginally over the last few days after crossing $ 65 a barrel mark earlier this week. It is around $ 63 a barrel now.

Since fuel prices are benchmarked to a 15-day rolling average of global refined products' prices and dollar exchange rate, pump prices can be expected to remain northbound over the next few days even if crude hovers at the current level or falls.

The petrol and diesel prices have increased 24 times in 2021 with the two auto fuels increasing by Rs 6.87 and Rs 7.10 per litre, respectively so far this year.

Oil companies executives said that petrol and diesel prices may increase further in the coming days as retail prices may have to be balanced in line with global developments to prevent OMCs from making losses on the sale of auto fuels.


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