ISLAMABAD: With the upcoming general elections in sight the government announced on Saturday reduction in the prices of petrol and diesel to provide relief to consumers for the month of April.
As per the decision, the petrol price has been reduced by Rs2.07 and that of diesel by Rs2.00 per litre.
However, the government has decided to maintain the prices of kerosene and light diesel at the same level prevalent in in the month of March.
The new prices of petrol have been set at Rs86 per litre and high speed diesel (HSD) at Rs96.45.
However, the prices of kerosene and light diesel oil (LDO) have been maintained at level of Rs76.46 per litre and Rs65.30 per litre, respectively.
In a summary moved to the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum Division, the Oil and Gas Regulatory Authority (Ogra) had recommended reduction in price of petrol by Rs5.26 per litre (6 per cent) from Rs88.07 to Rs82.81 per litre.
Petrol is used in vehicles and with the suspension of indigenous gas supply to CNG stations, especially in Punjab, its consumption had gone up.
The price of HSD, which is mostly used in the transport and agriculture sectors, had been recommended to make a minor increase of Rs0.65 (0.7%), taking the price to Rs99.10 per litre from Rs98.45 per litre.
The finance ministry in a statement said that Ogra had proposed increase in the price of diesel by Rs0.65 per litre, but keeping in view the fact that diesel is primarily used in public transportation, transportation of goods, and also in farm equipment, the government has decided not to burden the public at large with higher rates of diesel.
Ogra had recommended a greater reduction in the price of petrol, but keeping in mind that in previous months the government reduced the price of petrol by more than what Ogra had recommended, and given the rising price of crude oil in the international market, the government took the decision to reduce the price of petrol by Rs2.07 per litre.
Finally, the prices of kerosene and LDO are being maintained at the level as in March 2018 even though Ogra had recommended increasing the rates of both these products.
The prices shall be effective from April 1, 2018 till midnight on April 30, 2018, the notification said.
At present, two types of taxes are being charged from consumers — petroleum levy and general sales tax.
The government is charging a higher rate of general sales tax at 31 per cent on high speed diesel which is widely used in agriculture and transport sectors.
It is charging 17 per cent GST on other petroleum products. In addition, the government is charging Rs8 per litre petroleum levy on HSD, Rs10 on petrol, Rs6 on light diesel oil and Rs3 per litre on kerosene.