Govt keeps petrol price unchanged, hikes HSD by Rs7.5
Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Friday announced that the price of petrol would remain unchanged at Rs262 per litre for the next fortnight while the price of high-speed diesel (HSD) was raised by Rs7.5 per litre to Rs260.5.
Addressing a press conference today, the finance minister did not announce if there were any changes in the prices of kerosene and light-diesel oil.
Explaining the reason for the HSD price increase, Dar said the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) had reported an increase of $3.5 in diesel prices in the international markets in the last few days, with a similar upward trend for petrol prices.
He said the Ogra team had strived to pass on the minimum possible price increase to consumers as per the prime minister’s instructions so there was no increase in the petrol price.
“However, because there has been a lot of negative movement and increase in prices for diesel, they (Ogra) have recommended the government to do a minimum increase of Rs7.5 in the price of diesel.”
On June 15, the government decided to keep the prices of all petroleum products unchanged, except light diesel oil, in line with the international market.
Dar had said final price
Dar had said the final price calculations provided by Ogra at the close of business hours had suggested there was no impact on prices although international prices had slightly gone up.
Therefore, he had said the prices would remain unchanged. As such, the ex-depot rates of high-speed diesel, petrol and kerosene were maintained at Rs253, Rs262 and Rs164.07 per litre.
Meanwhile, the price of light diesel oil was increased by Rs2.52 to Rs150.20 per litre from Rs147.68.
The recent announcement by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar regarding the unchanged petrol prices and the increase in the price of high-speed diesel (HSD) has raised concerns among consumers, particularly those who rely on diesel-powered vehicles for their daily commutes or businesses.
The increase of Rs7.5 per litre in the price of HSD has been attributed to the rise in diesel prices in the international markets. The Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) had reported an increase of $3.5 in diesel prices, which prompted the recommendation for a minimum increase in the price of diesel in Pakistan.
While the government has attempted to pass on the minimum possible price increase to consumers, the hike in diesel prices is likely to have a significant impact on the transport sector, which relies heavily on diesel-powered vehicles. The cost of transportation of goods and services is likely to increase, which could lead to higher prices for consumers.
Moreover, the increase in diesel prices could also impact the agriculture sector, which heavily relies on diesel-powered irrigation pumps and tractors. The rise in fuel prices could lead to higher production costs for farmers, which could ultimately affect food prices and availability.
Despite the increase in the price of HSD, the finance minister has assured consumers that there will be no increase in the price of petrol. Petrol prices have remained unchanged at Rs262 per litre for the next two weeks. However, there has been no announcement regarding any changes in the prices of kerosene and light-diesel oil.
It is worth noting that the decision to keep the petrol prices unchanged comes at a time when the global crude oil prices are on the rise. The Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies have agreed to gradually increase production, which has led to a slight decline in crude oil prices. However, the prices are still significantly higher than they were a year ago.
The government’s decision to keep petrol prices unchanged may provide some relief to consumers who are already reeling from the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the increase in diesel prices could offset any benefits gained from the unchanged petrol prices.
In conclusion, the recent announcement by the finance minister regarding the unchanged petrol prices and the increase in the price of HSD is likely to have significant implications for the transport and agriculture sectors, as well as for consumers who rely on diesel-powered vehicles. While the government has attempted to minimize the impact on consumers, the rise in diesel prices could lead to higher production costs and ultimately affect food prices and availability. It remains to be seen whether the government will undertake any measures to mitigate the impact of the diesel price hike on consumers and the economy.