Post-budget 2018 Reaction Mr. B Anand, CEO, Essar Oil (a Rosneft & Trafigura-UCP company)

This is a commendable budget from the Govt. as it has a strong focus on boosting the nation’s infrastructure, in the form of road connectivity and coverage of airports. This is expected to help in improving accessibility and development of a number of towns in the country, spelling good opportunities for companies in the oil retailing, bitumen and ATF space to contribute towards proposed nation building initiatives.

The thrust on agricultural production, optimizing farm income and the plans for Operation Green to benefit the agriculture sector will provide further avenues for diesel manufacturers to participate in activities related to these programs. Moreover, the upsurge in gas connections under Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Scheme is another positive step by the Govt. which will create the need for more LPG in the country.

Some respite was expected to address the spiralling fuel prices in the country; however, the restructuring of rates and cesses on Petrol & Diesel is tax neutral, and a marginal increase in the cess on crude has increased the cost to the refiners.

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