Minister rules out deregulation of diesel, for now

The government has ruled out any immediate deregulation of the prices of diesel, cooking gas (LPG) and kerosene even as the prime minister's economic advisory council (PMEAC) had hinted at a hike in the retail price of diesel.

Minister of state for petroleum and natural gas R P N Singh today informed the Rajya Sabha today that said there was no proposal for withdrawing the subsidy on the fuels of mass consumption.

"At present, there is no such proposal," he said in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha, when asked if the government plans to deregulate diesel and cooking fuel.

The minister, however, did not deny the possibility of another hike in diesel prices with the rising subsidy eating into the government's fiscal health.

He said the government had provided for a subsidy of Rs0.82 per litre on PDS kerosene and Rs22.58 per 14.2-kg LPG cylinder in its budget.

"In addition, the public sector oil marketing companies (OMCs) also incur revenue loss on sale of diesel, PDS kerosene and domestic LPG as the prices of these products are being modulated by the government," he said.