CPI(M) rejects RIL gas price cut to $ 4.20/unit

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New Delhi, Sep 13 (UNI) Communist Party of India (Marxist) today rejected the recommendation of the empowered group of ministers (EGoM) who had fixed RIL gas price to 4.20 dollar per million British thermal units (mBtu).

RIL formulation for gas price agreed by EGoM is based on the linkage with international price of crude oil and not with the actual cost of producing gas in the country, CPI (M) said in a statement.

There is absolutely no justification for such linkage which is being made only to find a route to artificially inflate the price for windfall gain of the private company, it added.

''The Government has also weakened the genuine case of the state-owned unit NTPC which is fighting a legal battle in the Mumbai High Court against RIL, which was obligated to supply gas from KG Basin at rational price of 2.34 dollar per unit as per international competitive bidding in 2004,'' it added.

Inspite of serious objections raised in and outside Parliament, as well as the opposition from the Power and Fertiliser Ministries, EGoM has reportedly permitted RIL to fix a highly inflated gas price of 4.20 dollar mBtu from KG Basin, which is a token reduction from the original price of 4.33 dollar mBtu claimed by the company, the party said adding that such a high price would severely affect the viability of the consumer industries like power and fertiliser which in turn would hit the commonman.

The pricing can not be left to the market forces based on import parity only to encourage super profit to the investors, who have been given contract under Production Sharing Contract (PSC), CPI(M) said.


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