Petrol prices fell to their lowest level in 2018 today amid low brent crude oil prices in the international market. Oil marketing companies cut petrol and diesel prices between 14 to 22 paise per litre today across the country.
The revision brought the price of petrol in Delhi to Rs 69.55 per litre, Rs 71.65 per litre in Kolkata, Rs 72.16 per litre in Chennai, Rs 75.18 per litre in Mumbai , Rs 70.11 per litre in Bengaluru and Rs 69.6 per litre in Noida.
Similarly, in Delhi, diesel prices stood at Rs 63.62 a litre, Rs 65.37 in Kolkata, Rs 66.57 in Mumbai, Rs 67.16 in Chennai, Rs 63.97 in Bengaluru and Rs 63.09 in Noida.
On October 4, petrol price rose to 84.06 per litre in Delhi and Rs 91.34 in Mumbai, its highest level in 2018 due to record prices of brent crude. Brent crude prices were hovering over $85 per barrel in early October which made import of crude oil for the oil companies costlier.
Since then, petrol price in Delhi has fallen 17% to the current level of 69.55 per litre. Similarly, brent crude oil prices too have lost 38.03% from their recent highs this year. Currently, brent crude oil trades at $53.22 per barrel.
In October, the government had cut the excise duty on fuel prices in order to tackle increasing prices of petrol and diesel.
The estimated loss of revenue to the central government stood at about Rs 7,000 crore post the reduction in excise duty on October 4 in the remaining part of the fiscal, Minister of State for Finance Shiv Pratap Shukla said in the Lok Sabha.
The price of the fuel varies across the country as states and Union Territories levy their own rate of VAT (value added tax).
For example, on December 19, the retail price of petrol was Rs 70.63 a litre. This included, Rs 17.98 central excise duty, Rs 15.02 state VAT and Rs 3.59 commission of dealer.
In case of diesel, the retail price was Rs 64.54 (central excise duty of Rs 13.83, state VAT of Rs 9.51 and dealer commission of Rs 2.53).
Earlier, the government asked the oil marketing companies to sell petrol and diesel below the international rates to shield the common man from the effects of high international prices.
In turn, the oil marketing companies were reimbursed by the government via subsidies to minimise their losses. But in 2010, the government deregulated the price of petrol and linked it to the international oil market prices.
In 2014, diesel prices also were deregulated to prevent the oil marketing companies from burgeoning losses. Earlier, petrol and diesel prices were changed on a fortnightly basis in line with a change in international oil prices.
But from June 16, 2017, oil marketing companies started changing the prices of petrol and diesel on a daily basis.
Edited by Aseem Thapliyal