Riding on better realisation and a favourable exchange rate, the country’s biggest exploration firm, Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC), on Tuesday reported a 102 per cent rise in net profit for the quarter ended March 31.
Profit for the three-month period stood at Rs 5,644 crore, against Rs 2,791 crore in the corresponding quarter last year. Net sales rose 22 per cent to Rs 18,976 crore, the company said.
During the quarter, ONGC paid Rs 14,170 crore for subsidising diesel, domestic liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) and kerosene, against Rs 12,136 crore in the year-ago period. The subsidy outgo was made good by rupee depreciation, from Rs 47.95 against a dollar in the March quarter of 2010-11 to Rs 50.29 a year later.
ONGC gives discounts on crude oil sales to government oil marketing companies to part compensate their losses from regulated sale of diesel, kerosene and domestic LPG. The subsidy in the form of discount for the entire financial year stood at Rs 44,466 crore.
The company’s profit for 2011-12 rose 33 per cent to Rs 25,123 crore on account of a one-time gain of Rs 3,141 crore from the royalty reimbursed by Cairn India Ltd for its Barmer block in Rajasthan. ONGC has a 30 per cent stake in the Barmer block, but under an earlier arrangement, it had been paying royalty for the entire production.
Net sales for the year rose 15 per cent to Rs 76,130 crore. With this profit, ONGC regained its position as the country’s top profit-making company. It replaced the Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL), which made profit of Rs 20,040 crore during last fiscal.
Chairman Sudhir Vasudeva said ONGC got $44.32 on sale of every barrel of crude oil during the quarter after giving a record subsidy discount of $77.3 per barrel. This was 14.37 per cent higher compared to $38.75 in the corresponding quarter of the previous financial year.