Petrol, diesel prices on the boil as Modi Govt enters 5th yr

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The average prices of supermarket petrol and diesel has increased every day since the end of March, setting a record for consecutive daily rises. The US (19.53 mbd) and China (12.02 mbd) are the top two.

Petrol price breached the Rs 80 mark in Kolkata on Thursday, marking a four-year high, four days after the climbed to an unprecedented Rs 70 a litre in the city.

The Union Minister put the blame on uncertain political conditions in oil exploring countries and the global market for the oil price rise. Followed by Russian Federation, the US, Brazil, Canada and China.

As industry bodies demanded a cut on excise duty on petrol and diesel prices, Pradhan said the central government had reduced the excise on fuel by Rs 2 per litre last October.

And, data with the Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell, an official body here, shows this country had the highest price in the sub-continent, as on May 1. Diesel prices, which have already hit all-time highs, also rose around Rs 3 a litre during the period. If Odisha government cuts its Value-Added Tax, the fuel price will come down. Though UPA lost elections on several other issues in 2014, its inability to control fuel prices played a big role. Rising fuel prices is a crisis situation for the government.

On January 21 of 2018, he said: We are trying that petrol, diesel and kerosene should also come under the ambit of GST.

One way the government is considering to reduce the pressure on consumers is by introducing a windfall tax on local oil producers, to be activated in case worldwide prices exceed US$70 a barrel.

Besides, the state share in taxes like excise, the Centre does provide sixty to 70 per cent share in all centrally sponsored schemes to states like the PMAY, MGNREGS, NRHM, said Pradhan.

The continuous increase in fuel prices has become a cause of concern for both the citizens and the government as it would push up inflation and current account deficit. In October past year, the Centre cut excise duty by Rs 2.

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