Import costs of petroleum products have increased by 39.6 percent over the past four years between 2016-17 and 2020-21.
According to official data from the Department of Petroleum, compared to $10.6 billion the Treasury incurred for petroleum product imports in 2016-17, the cost is up 39.6 percent to $14.8 billion in 2020-21 .
Also from 2016-17, the cost of importing petroleum products has steadily increased. In 2017-18 it was $13.6 billion, in 2018-19 it rose further to $16.3 billion, while in 2019-20 it moved a step further to $17.7 billion.
Although the costs in 2020-21 ($14.8 billion) were lower than the money spent in 2019-20 ($17.7 billion) for this purpose, official sources said the cost of importing petroleum products has risen. since global crude prices had seen a sharp rise in the recent past.
They further said that the domestic price of crude oil is linked to international benchmarks (prices) of crude prices. These benchmarks are influenced by many factors, including supply and demand, the impact of the Covid scenario and the prevailing geopolitical situation. Linear co-relationship between pricing and any of these factors individually cannot be determined, she added.
Meanwhile, to ensure uninterrupted supply of petroleum products in the country, government-owned enterprises (PSUs) import petroleum products to bridge the supply-demand gap in the domestic market.