Petrol, diesel prices reduced by Rs2 per litre

State-run oil marketing companies have announced a reduction in the retail prices of petrol and diesel by Rs2 a litre each in Delhi and a corresponding reduction in other states as well.

The actual reduction in fuel prices may vary from state to state depending on state-level levies, Indian Oil Corporation (IOC), the country's largest fuel retailer, stated in a release.

The new rates are effective midnight of 15 December, the release added.

''The international prices of both petrol and diesel have continued to be on a downtrend. The rupee-dollar exchange rate, however, has appreciated since the last price change and the combined impact of both these factors warrant a decrease in retail selling prices of petrol and diesel,'' Indian Oil stated in its release.

This is the eighth straight reduction in petrol prices since August, and the fourth in diesel, since its prices were deregulated in October.

In Delhi, petrol will now cost Rs61.33 a litre, the lowest in 44 months, compared to earlier price of Rs63.33. In Mumbai, petrol price has been cut by Rs2.09 a litre to Rs68.86.

Diesel will cost Rs50.51 a litre in Delhi, the lowest since July 2013, as against Rs52.51 earlier. In Mumbai, it will cost Rs57.91 per litre compared to Rs60.11 earlier.

With oil prices close to having halved from recent highs of $115 a barrel in June, the reduction in petrol and diesel prices could have been steeper but for the government's decision to raise the excise duty on petrol by Rs2.25 and on diesel by Re1 a litre.

With today's reduction, OMCs have effected a cumulative reduction of Rs12.27 per litre of petrol and a Rs3.37 per litre reduction in the price of diesel since August.