NEW DELHI: Oil marketing companies raised prices of petrol and diesel again on Wednesday by 80 paise per litre each. Following the hike, petrol was retailing for ₹101.01 a litre in the national capital, while diesel sold for 92.27 a litre.
This was the eighth hike in nine days, taking the cumulative increase in domestic fuel prices during the period to ₹5.60 a litre.
Petrol prices had touched a record ₹110.04 per litre in November 2021, while diesel hit an all-time high of ₹98.42 per litre in Delhi, before the Centre lowered the excise duty on transport fuels.
The hike in fuel prices is likely to continue in April, said experts, as the gap between domestic retail prices and global oil prices is very high.
Global oil prices rebounded in Asian trading on Wednesday as investors assessed the outlook for a de-escalation of Russia’s war in Ukraine, which has entered its second month and rattled markets worldwide. Futures in New York rose above $105 a barrel after losing more than 8% over the previous two sessions.
Rahul Kalantri, vice president for commodities at Mehta Equities Ltd, said “Oil prices were trading down on Tuesday as it appeared that Ukraine and Russia had made some progress in their peace talks, but oil price recoups losses as API reports large crude oil inventory draw.”
The Indian crude oil basket, comprising Oman, Dubai and Brent crude was at $112.41 per barrel on 30, according to data from the Petroleum Planning & Analysis Cell of the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas.
Oil prices play a major role in India’s economy and budget arithmetic as the country imports around 85% of its energy requirements.
Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday said the “unprecedented” hike in oil prices is a major challenge.
Concerns over a slowdown to the economic recovery have also emerged because inflation rate in India has been high off late, above the tolerance level of 6% set by the Reserve Bank of India. Consumer price index which reflects the retail inflation stood at 6.07% in February.
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