Mumbai | December 6, 2023: Energy prices are required to remain stable and predictable, said Minister of Petroleum and Natural Gas, Hardeep Singh Puri amid the volatility in crude oil prices on account of supply cuts by oil-producing countries.
Speaking at CNBC-TV18 India Business Leader Awards (IBLA) 2023 on Saturday, Puri said the deepening of oil supply cuts by the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and its allies, or OPEC+, has led to plummeting of crude prices.
“With the current situation when half the world is in recession and the other half is flirting with recession, if oil prices go up then demand is going to drop,” the oil minister added.
On December 1, OPEC+ voluntarily agreed to cut oil production by nearly 1 million barrels a day by early 2024. After the announcement, crude oil prices fell as the move drew skepticism on the group’s ability to achieve the supply cuts target. The benchmark Brent crude fell to $82.83 a barrel, down 0.32 percent, on December 1, while West Texas Intermediate (WTI) slipped 0.26 percent.
Minister Puri lauded the contribution of oil marketing companies (OMCs) for being “responsible corporate citizens” and bearing losses when crude prices had skyrocketed. He added that OMCs incurred losses of Rs 28,000 crore for LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) and the government provided a subsidy of Rs 22,000 crore for their losses. The OMCs have again become profitable, he said.
The Indian refiners swung back to profit in the second quarter, posting a consolidated net profit of Rs 27,295 crore in the second quarter of FY24.
The Indian Business Leader Awards (IBLA), organized by CNBC-TV18, is dedicated to recognizing and applauding exceptional leaders and visionaries in India’s business domain. The platform serves as a prestigious forum for prominent business figures, policymakers,
and influencers, fostering recognition and appreciation for excellence throughout the Indian business community.