The government has cut the windfall profit tax on crude oil produced in the country while the levy on exports of diesel and ATF has been hiked, an official notification said.


Photograph: Angus Mordant/Reuters

The tax, levied in the form of special additional excise duty or SAED, on domestically produced crude oil was reduced to Rs 6,700 per tonne from Rs 7,100 a tonne.

SAED on the export of diesel was increased to Rs 6 per litre from Rs 5.50 a litre and on jet fuel or ATF to Rs 4 per litre from Rs 2, the notification said.


SAED on export of petrol will continue to be zero.

The new tax rates came into effect from Saturday, the order dated September 1, said.

India first imposed windfall profit taxes on July 1 last year, joining a growing number of nations that tax supernormal profits of energy companies.

At that time, export duties of Rs 6 per litre ($12 per barrel) each were levied on petrol and ATF and Rs 13 a litre ($26 a barrel) on diesel.

A Rs 23,250 per tonne (USD 40 per barrel) windfall profit tax on crude oil produced by companies such as Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) was also levied.

The tax rates are reviewed every fortnight based on average oil prices in the previous two weeks.

A windfall tax is levied on domestic crude oil if rates of the global benchmark rise above $75 per barrel. Export of diesel, ATF and petrol attract the levy if product cracks (or margins) rise above $20 per barrel.

Product cracks or margins are the difference between crude oil (raw material) and finished petroleum products.

International crude oil prices averaged $86.43 per barrel in August, up from $80.37 in the preceding month and $74.93 a barrel in June.

The levy on domestic crude oil dropped to nil in the first half of April as international crude oil prices fell but was back in the second half in step with a rise in rates.

Levy on diesel became nil in April but the levy was brought back in August. Levy on ATF became nil in March and was brought back in second half of August.

The export tax on petrol was scrapped in the very first review.

Crude oil pumped out of the ground and from below the seabed is refined and converted into fuels like petrol, diesel and aviation turbine fuel (ATF).

Reliance Industries Ltd, which operates the world’s largest single-location oil refinery complex at Jamnagar in Gujarat, and Rosneft-backed Nayara Energy are primary exporters of fuel in the country.

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