Petrol Prices Rise To 5-Year High, Diesel Costliest Ever

| April 20 , 2018 , 14:46 IST

Amidst an upward trend in global prices of crude fuel, petrol and diesel prices continued to rise in India, hitting multi-year highs on Friday.

The retail price of petrol stood at Rs 74.08 per litre in Delhi, the highest since September 2013 while diesel retailed at a record high of Rs 65.31 according to Indian Oil website. In Kolkata, petrol was priced at Rs 76.78 and diesel at Rs 68.01, while in Chennai petrol was priced at Rs 76.85 and diesel at Rs 68.9. The highest petrol price was noted in Mumbai at Rs 81.93, with diesel at Rs 69.54.

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Since the beginning of this month itself, the petrol prices have gone up by more than 50 paise in major cities, and diesel by over 90 paise. Overall, since the beginning of the year, petrol prices have increased by more than Rs 4 per litre in major cities, and diesel by Rs 5-6 per litre.

Due to on-going draw downs in global supply, global oil prices have risen to their highest since 2014 with Brent crude futures on Friday steady at $73.78 a barrel. Apart from the crude oil prices, there is a possibility that the US may once again impose sanctions on Iran, OPEC's third-largest producer, leading to further supply reduction. 

Apart from global crude fuel prices, the domestic petrol and diesel prices depend on government taxes, both at the central and state level. The central government in October 2017 had reduced the excise duty by Rs 2 per litre, which provided moderate relief to the public. However, a global rally in crude prices, once again thrust the prices sky-high, since India imports the bulk of its energy requirements.

The minor reduction in excise duty announced in October 2017 cost the government a whopping Rs 26,000 crore.