Diesel, kerosene, LPG prices hiked; excise, customs duties cut
New Delhi: Biting the bullet, government today hiked the price of diesel by Rs 3 a litre, kerosene Rs 2 a litre and cooking gas by a steep Rs 50 a cylinder to raise Rs 21,000 crores, and slashed customs and excise duties on petroleum products, sacrificing Rs 49,000 crore a year.
The Empowered Group of Ministers (EGoM), headed by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, met today and took the much-deferred politically sensitive decision, which Oil Minister S Jaipal Reddy said was done to cut down on burgeoning under-recovery of oil marketing companies.
The under-recoveries which stood at Rs 1,71,140 crores will now come down by Rs 21,000 crores after today’s decision.
Today’s decision comes more than a month after petrol price was hiked by Rs 5 a litre.
Reddy told a press conference that the price of diesel would be raised by Rs 3 a litre, kerosene supplied through PDS by Rs 2 per litre and domestic LPG by Rs 50 a cylinder.
He described the increase as “very modest and minimal”.
Giving details of the duty restructuring, Reddy said the meeting decided on elimination of 5 per cent customs duty on crude oil and all petroleum products , that will result in a revenue loss of Rs 26,000 crores for the government for the full fiscal year.
The excise duty on diesel has been reduced from Rs 4.60 a litre to Rs 2 a litre which will entail a revenue loss of Rs 23,000 crore during 2011-12.
He said it could not be cut any further as the special excise duty and the additional excise duty have been earmarked for the central road fund and the educational cess.
On both these accounts, the government will incur a loss of Rs 49,000 crore.