In the midst of the nationwide lockdown that has been called to curtail the spread of the new coronavirus or COVID-19, the Government of Assam has imposed a steep hike in the price of fuel.
According to initial reports, the prices will be increased by Rs. 5 per litre. Under the revised rates, the price of petrol will be increased to Rs. 77.48 per litre, while the price of diesel will be increased to Rs. 60.50 per litre.
It is pertinent to mention here that Assam Finance and Health Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma had hinted at an upsurge in the prices of the commodities. He had also included liquor to the list. "As a state, we can hike taxes only on petrol, diesel and liquor. Probably at some point of time, the state may raise tax on petrol and diesel, provided the prices in the international market go down so that the consumers are not affected", Sarma had said at a press conference.
This comes amid troubling times for oil. In the US, for instance, supply far exceeds demand. Breaking all records and creating a bizarre puzzle for the analysts around the world, it turned upside down on Monday when the American Base Crude, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) started trading below zero, closing at a negative $37.67.
Technically this means that the oil producers will pay the buyers to take the product off their hands. To understand this, it is important to understand the nature of petroleum as a commodity in the global market.
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