Modi urges oil suppliers to review payment terms to give rupee relief

Marco Green
October 16, 2018

"The oil market is producer driven and both the quantity and prices are determined by the oil-producing countries".

Meanwhile, official sources said that Modi will meet the chief executives of major global and Indian oil and gas companies as the United States sanctions on Iran comes into effect from November 4, and as crude oil prices continue to be volatile.

Union ministers Arun Jaitley and Dharmendra Pradhan and NITI Aayog vice-chairman Rajiv Kumar were also present at the meeting.

India, the world's third-biggest oil importer, is facing record high retail prices as worldwide crude rate soared and rupee value dipped.

The prime minister also spoke about the various policy initiatives and developmental measures undertaken by his government in the sector, including liberalisation in gas pricing and marketing, open acreage licensing policy, early monetisation of coal bed methane, incentives for discovery of small fields and seismic survey at a national level.

"Saudi Aramco's desire is to invest in consumer-facing segments such as retail fuels and petrochemicals, building an integrated downstream business in India as well as our commitment to invest in strategic storage", Falih said.

This comes as fuel prices continue to rise across the four major metros, burning a hole in common man's pocket.

The Indian rupee has fallen 14.5 per cent this year, making imports costlier. India is dependent on imports to meet 83 per cent of its demand and more than half of its natural gas requirements.

Modi highlighted the economic hardships higher oil prices bring to consuming countries like India, and sought capital and technological support from producers to raise local output.

The Congress leader took a dig at the finance minister by describing him as a blog writer rather than being an efficient minister and said the Centre attributed the slowing down of the economy, the falling rupee and all such things to global factors.

Modi also asked global industry executives why they haven't committed much investment to the Indian upstream sector despite government reforming policy as per their suggestions in previous annual meetings, according to sources. Talking of ongoing commercial exploitation, he made a special mention of extension of production sharing contracts, the statement said.

Continuing with its campaign against the government over the Rafale deal, the Congress Sunday claimed that Prime Minister Narendra Modi was directly involved in it, adding that he had much to hide about it. He said the support of oil producing companies would be very critical to bridge the gap. But the plan could not go through in view of strong opposition from Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC). Sources said at one point during discussion on production cost of oil, the Saudi minister said producers "lose money" at $40-50 per barrel price.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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