Low oil prices: IMF conditions deprive people of plummeting oil prices
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2015-12-02 08:26:38

Low oil prices: IMF conditions deprive people of plummeting oil prices

oil

 

Decrease in oil price in  international market helped Pakistan save around $2.5 billion in imports of petroleum products during the first four months (July to October) of this fiscal year, according to a latest report of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP).This means the country would be able to save around $7.5bn this fiscal year if the current oil prices prevail. Import bill of petroleum products plunged by 43 per cent to $3.263bn during the four months from $5.733bn a year ago, the report said. Oil prices have been falling for more than 18 months, but FY15 ending on June 30 did not reflect any significant change. Since June 2014 to June 2015, oil prices dropped by over 50pc in the international market but Pakistan’s import bill did not reflect a significant decline.World oil prices have now plummeted to below $50 a barrel from around $115 in mid-2014. On Thursday, Brent oil prices were close to $46 a barrel while US crude was just under $43. During FY15, the import bill of the petroleum products was $12.155bn, a decline of only $2.6bn compared to the preceding year. The decline in the bill should be around $7bn. The International Monetary Fund has congratulated Pakistan for being restrained when it comes to sharing the benefits of falling oil prices with the consumers, basically with an eye on the fiscal framework, but the government must tell us where this benefit is going.Latest data on imports shows that Pakistan has saved $2.5bn on its oil import bill compared to the same period last year. But the prices at the pump do not seem to reflect this since they have hardly moved since June. As an example, E10 gasoline was notified by the Oil & Gas Regulatory Authority at Rs75.29 on June 1, and remained at Rs73.76 as of Oct 31.All other categories of fuel show similarly marginal revisions. At the start of the year, when the oil price tumble first registered its presence in the country’s balance of payments’ data, the government had made a commitment to the nation that a portion of the downward slide would be shared with the consuming public, and the remaining would be retained by the government.That was accepted by most commentators since the declines in international prices were too steep to pass through in one go for fear that the reduced prices would destabilise the fiscal accounts. Many other countries were taking the same steps. But today, as a new tax on luxury items is passed with the possibility that more such measures may be coming in the months ahead, the particularly stingy declines at the pump compared to the steep falls in international prices must be addressed.

pk.shafaqna.com

 

 

Categories:   Pakistan ، Business ،
Tags:   pakistan ، Ishaq Dar ، IMF ، State bank ، Oil pirces ،
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