Based on the data, the world’s largest oil producer, Saudi Arabia, has the cheapest price among the top 10 consumers — $0.54 a litre for petrol and $0.13 a litre for diesel. Followed by Russia, the US, Brazil, Canada and China. The average global price of petrol last week stood at $1.18 a litre and $1.07 a litre for diesel.
And, data with the Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell, an official body here, shows this country had the highest price in the sub-continent, as on May 1. Pakistan’s is Rs 50.67 a litre for petrol and Rs 57.06 a litre for diesel.
Though all countries have access to the same global price for crude oil, retail prices in each depend on taxes.
In India, the central government levies a fixed excise duty of Rs 19.48 a litre on petrol and Rs 15.33 a litre on diesel; state governments impose value added tax.
“India takes a 15-day average of international fuel prices to set its retail prices. Because of that, we are able to partly take care of sudden spikes in global crude prices,” M K Surana, chairman and managing director of Hindustan Petroleum Corporation, told the media last week.
According to industry sources, every $1 increase in international crude oil prices
demand an increase of at least 63p a litre in Indian rates. The price of petrol was Rs 78.12 a litre and diesel was Rs 69.06 a litre on Sunday in Delhi. In Mumbai, it touched an all-time high of Rs 85.93 a litre and Rs 73.53 a litre, respectively.
The Indian basket of crude oil is a weighted average of Brent crude (sweet) and Dubai and Oman crude (sour); it touched $75.95 a barrel on Saturday. On Sunday, Brent crude came down to $76.44 a barrel, after the Opec cartel and Russia said they planned to boost oil output by a million barrels a day, to curb a rally that took the price above $80 a barrel.