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Oil PSUs don’t overcharge, Pradhan reminds CAG

Speaking at a workshop on Integrated Margin Management on Thursday, the minister said, ‘These PSUs do business with a margin of 1 to 1.5 per cent and this  is a fact that we have shared a burden of Rs 28,680 crore on subsidy in last five years. There should be a debate on it. Let the economist, planners and experts come together to discuss these challenges.’

‘Since the volume of business is high, people think that huge amount of money was earned. On balance sheet we are right and anyone can have access to files through RTI. The challenge is what to do with the people’s expectation. We need to think. It’s time to learn and share challenges for a solution for the betterment of the nation,’ he said.

Recently, CAG in its latest report already placed in the parliament expressed dismay over Indian Oil Corporation Ltd (IOCL), Hindustan Petroleum Corp (HPCL) and Bharat Petroleum Corp (BPCL)
for overcharging customers by Rs 26,626 crore from 2007-08 to 2011-12 by charging notional levies including customs duty on fuel they have sold.

He has also defended the pricing methodology followed by oil firms of calculating the desired retail price in a manner as if the product was imported by adding customs duty, freight, insurance, ocean loss charges etc to prevail international price of petrol, diesel, LPG or kerosene.

The minister has urged the Public Sector Oil Companies (PSOC) to pool their resources, technologies, experiences and best practices so that they are better prepared to meet the challenges of the future. ‘The PSOC should compete for their market share but at  the same time, best ideas and experiences should be shared among themselves.’
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