Petrol prices to remain unchanged

Ishaq Dar

The federal government has decided to keep the existing prices of petroleum products unchanged for the next fortnight.

“Govt of Pakistan has decided to keep the existing prices of petroleum products unchanged with effect from January 1 to 15, 2023 to provide relief to the common man,” Finance Minister Ishaq Dar said in a tweet on Saturday.

The finance minister said the prices were being kept unchanged despite increase in the international oil prices. Earlier this month, the federal government slashed the prices of petroleum products by up to Rs10 per litre.

The government is charging a petroleum levy of Rs50 per litre on petrol, Rs25 per litre on HSD, Rs7.01 per litre on kerosene oil and Rs15.39 per litre on LDO.

The government, however, promised the international lender that it would increase the petroleum levy on HSD to Rs50 by April 2023.

The existing petrol price is Rs214.80 per litre and it includes Rs50 levy and Rs14 margin and other taxes. The ex-refinery price of diesel is Rs187 per litre and the government is receiving Rs30 in levy and Rs10 in other taxes, making its current price as Rs227.80 per litre.

The finance minister said that following a rise in the prices of petroleum products in the international market, the Oil and Regulatory Gas Authority had recommended a slight upward revision in the tariff for kerosene and light diesel oil.

The regulatory authority’s recommendation was not passed by the government on Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif’s directives, Dar added.

“The decision was taken after considering that the weather is cold and the poorest people use light diesel oil for tubewells while kerosene is also used by people earning the lowest incomes,” he said.

“According to the prime minister’s directives, it has been decided that the government will absorb the levy on these two products and reduce the collected amount to maintain these prices.”

In a video statement, Finance Minister Ishaq Dar announced that as a result of the decision, the price of petrol has been fixed at Rs214.80 per litre and diesel at Rs227.80 per litre.