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Saturday, April 13, 2024

Fuel becomes a luxury!

Increase in fuel prices due to petroleum development levy by Rs10 on petrol and Rs4 on diesel to revive the IMF program

Strict economic measures to reach an agreement with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are still going on and another increase in fuel price has been confirmed. No doubt, such increases in fuel prices have made fuel no less than a luxury good. On Thursday, Finance Minister, Miftah Ismail stated that in order to revive the IMF program, increase in petroleum development levy by Rs10 on petrol and Rs4 on diesel was essential.

Previously, the government charged no petroleum levy or general sales tax on petroleum items to offset the impact of rising global oil prices and the rupee’s devaluation against the dollar.

Read more: Is Shehbaz-Zardari govt increasing petrol prices again by Rs 50?

During a news conference with Musadik Malik, the finance minister announced that following a Rs10 per liter hike in PDL and a Rs4.85 increase in its pricing, the new price of petrol after midnight will be Rs 248.75.

He stated that diesel, which was previously priced at Rs 263, would now cost Rs 276.54 per litre due to a price rise of Rs 8.23 and a tax hike of Rs 5.

The government raised the price of petrol by Rs14.85 per liter, from Rs233.89 to Rs248.74.

Kerosene oil has seen the greatest increase, rising from Rs211.43 a liter to Rs230.26.

Following that, the price of low diesel oil (LDO) was raised by Rs 18.68 per litre, to Rs226.15 from Rs207.47.

HSD is mostly used in the transportation and agricultural sectors. As a result, any further increase in its price would cause a torrent of inflation throughout the country. It will have an impact on the farming sector, which is already in a tough situation due to a record spike in fertilizer prices. Hence, it will influence food costs across the country.

Petrol is utilized in motorcycles and automobiles, therefore any additional increase in its price will affect the middle class.

Kerosene oil is used for cooking in rural places when LPG is not available. The Pakistan Army also uses kerosene oil in remote areas of the country, particularly the north.

Miftah said that such increase in price is due to the violation of Imran Khan’s government with the IMF to increase the petroleum levy every month. He added that the increase is a result of rising prices of petroleum products in the international market. The program would now last four years, with a $2 billion increase over the original sum.

Read more: Miftah Ismail denies link between fuel price hike, IMF accord

However, Imran Khan tweeted, “Instead of buying cheaper oil from Russia Imported govt, brought in by US regime change conspiracy, continues to put unbearable burden on people while giving themselves NRO2 worth Rs 1100 bn. Total increase Rs 99 for petrol, Rs 133 for diesel. Join our protest ag this tomorrow.”