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No commitments on fuel price cut: Deora

Press Trust of India  |  New Delhi 

 "I have not said that we will next week decide on reducing prices. All I have said is that we will next week review (the situation emerging from Opec's decision)," Deora said.      

Energy ministers of 12-member oil cartel Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec), which accounts for 40 per cent of global crude oil production, are meeting tomorrow to review the present international oil price situation and it is widely expected that they would decide to curtail oil production, which may again lead to a rise in international oil prices.      

A Petroleum Ministry official said cutting fuel prices now will widen the revenue loss of state-run firms. "I dont see a trigger, unless political, for a reduction in fuel prices."

"For a price cut to happen, international oil prices have to sustain at levels lower than the break even point, for at least a month. We cannot be seen lowering the prices on one day's fluctuations. Tomorrow, if the prices go up, will the oil companies be allowed to raise prices," he said.      

Deora is believed to have met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh on the issue earlier this week and had been advised to wait for international oil prices to fall further before taking the issue to the Cabinet.      

Every time the US dollar becomes dearer by one rupee, the revenue loss on fuel sales jumps by Rs 8,500 cr.

First Published: Thu, October 23 2008. 19:51 IST