Oil ministry seeks cut in excise duty on petrol and diesel

Petrol crosses Rs 80 in Mumbai diesel over Rs 67

The Times of India reported that since January 1, petrol price increased by Rs 2.09 per litre, while diesel price increased by Rs 3.2 a litre.

Petrol price also continued to rise, reaching new three-year high in all cities.

The government ended all price controls on petrol and diesel in July 2017 and allowed oil marketing companies to fix fuel prices based on market prices of crude oil.

"Government has reaped a windfall through massive taxation of Petrol and Diesel".

Petrol price in Mumbai surged to Rs 80.10 per litre on Monday followed by Kolkata which saw second highest rate of petrol among metro cities. Excise duty on petrol fell by 6.5 cents from 45c per litre to 38.5 cents while that on diesel and paraffin declined from 40 cents per litre to 33 cents per litre.

A cut in excise duty on petrol and diesel in the budget, which will be unveiled on 1 February, would pose challenges as the government tackles a widening fiscal gap amid falling tax revenues due to the implementation of a goods and services tax (GST) regime from July.

Reducing fuel prices was one of the key promises of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. In Kolkata and Chennai today, the price of petrol was at 75.09 per litre and Rs 75.06 per litre respectively.

According to The Hindu Business Line, there is growing pressure on both the Centre and the states to lower taxes on the two fuels and bring them under GST.

Mumbai is bearing the maximum burden of the rise in global oil prices.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley recently said that the Central government favours bringing petrol products under the GST umbrella, but is looking for consensus with state governments to do the same.

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