Petroleum Sector: Golden Goose of The Centre
The government is treating the petroleum sector as its Golden Goose since the last 5 years, increasing excise duty and cess on petrol and diesel
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This share was merely 10.2% in the last year of UPA’s tenure. In FY-2014, the centre earned Rs 1.04 lakh crore from the petroleum sector while its total earnings were Rs 10.15 lakh crore. Another gearing aspect is that the backbone of petroleum sector -- crude oil -- dropped by almost 15% during the period 2014 to 2019 but instead of passing on the relief to the common man, the centre has continuously filled its coffers. The story does not end here. State governments levy an average of 30% VAT and other charges on the price of petrol. It is not as simple as it appears. There is more to it. Taxes from the state government do not apply on the base price of petrol (which is Rs 34.19p per litre). State taxes apply on the sum total of the base price, the centre’s taxes and the dealer’s commission. If the states levy their taxes on the base price of petrol, the consumers will be charged Rs.6 to Rs 8 less per litre in respective states. For example, in Delhi, petrol consumers will be able to buy petrol at a rate cheaper by Rs 6 per litre than what they are paying now. With diesel it’s the same story. Last but not least, oil marketing companies or OMCs buy crude oil on a monthly contract but consumers are charged prices which fluctuate on a daily basis. This trick of OMCs is serving them well and increasing their fortunes, day by day. In 2014-15, profit after tax of all three OMCs (IOCL, BPCL &HPCL) was Rs 13,091 crore which swelled to Rs 30,055 crore by the end of FY19.