Govt. monitoring crude oil prices: Mukherjee

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

NEW DELHI - Expressing concern over the rise in crude oil prices in international markets due to turmoil in the Middle East, Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee on Wednesday said the government is monitoring the situation and will manage it.

“Unfortunately, because of developments in the Middle East and its impact on the Arab world, it is causing uncertainty about production, about availability. We are watching the situation,” he told reporters here.

Mukherjee further pointed out that India had managed the situation even when crude prices touched a record USD 147 per barrel in July 2008, and said the Finance Ministry is in constant touch with its counterparts in the Petroleum Ministry on the unfolding situation.

“At that time also, we had to manage the situation. Government will take care of it (now),” he added.

Mukherjee’s comments come in the wake of massive protests in Cairo, where the protestors have been demanding the resignation of Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak.

The Egyptian crisis has added to the woes of oil marketing companies (OMCs), as global crude oil prices have crossed 100 dollars a barrel. The revenue loss on retail diesel sales has already risen by almost Rs 3, to a historic high of Rs 9.23 a litre. (ANI)

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