Oil PSUs losing Rs 1.37 a litre on petrol: Govt

Oil PSUs losing Rs 1.37 a litre on petrol: Govt New Delhi: State-owned oil firms are losing Rs 1.37 a litre on petrol despite last month's Rs 0.70 per litre hike in price, Oil Minister S Jaipal Reddy said Tuesday but did not indicate if the rates will go up anytime soon.

Reddy said that while the average price of crude oil in 2012-13 in the international market has been slightly lower than the average of 2011-12, the fall in rupee value against US dollar have made imports costlier by 7 percent.

The basket of crude India buys has averaged USD 105.22 per barrel this fiscal, down 6 percent from USD 111.89 per barrel in 2011-12. But rupee has depreciated to Rs 54.64 a US dollar, as compared to Rs 47.95.

This has resulted in actual cost of crude oil purchase going up by 7 percent to Rs 5,749 a barrel in 2012-13 from Rs 5,365 last fiscal, he said.

"Due to rise in international price of petrol, their (oil companies') under-recovery (or revenue loss) on sale of petrol is Rs 1.37 per litre," Reddy said in a written reply to a question in the Rajya Sabha today.

He however did not say if the oil companies will raise price of petrol, a commodity which was deregulated or freed from governmnt control in June 2010.

"Since then (June 2010), the public sector oil marketing companies have been taking decision on the pricing of petrol in line with the international oil prices and market conditions," he said.

This fiscal, oil firms have revised prices only on four occasions - raising it by a steep Rs 7.54 a litre from May 24 before cutting them by Rs 2.02 per litre from June 3 and by Rs 2.46 a litre from June 29. They last raised petrol price by Rs 0.70 a litre from July 24.

"...Though the average price of Indian basket of crude oil in terms of dollar per barrel this year is lower by 6 percent than the last year's average price but simultaneously due to depreciation in average value of rupee per US dollar by 14 percent, the average price...In rupee term this year has indeed increased by 7 percent," Reddy said.

Besides petrol, oil firms are losing Rs 12.06 per litre on diesel, Rs 28.54 a litre on PDS kerosne and Rs 231 per cylinder on domestic cooking gas (LPG).

They lost Rs 47,811 crore on sale of the three controlled products during the April-June quarter. This was on top of Rs 1,38,541 crore of revenue loss in 2011-12.

PTI