India on Wednesday joined a select league of nations having the world’s cleanest petrol and diesel as oil companies rolled out Euro-VI emission compliant fuels without either disruption or a price increase.
Leapfrogging from BS-IV grade fuel straight to BS-VI grade, equivalent to Euro-VI fuel, petrol and diesel would have resulted in an up to Re 1 per litre increase in cost but oil companies decided against passing this on to consumers and instead adjusted it against the reduction warranted from international oil prices plummeting to a 17-year low. “We are today 100 per cent supplying BS-VI petrol and diesel.
All the over 68,700 petrol pumps in the country are selling the cleaner fuel from today,” said Sanjiv Singh, Chairman, Indian Oil Corp (IOC) - the firm that controls roughly half of the market. He said there is no change in the retail selling price of the fuels because of the switchover.
Oil companies have not changed petrol and diesel price for over a fortnight now as they first adjusted the reduction warranted against the Rs 3 per litre increase in excise duty and now are setting off the increased cost of BS-VI fuel. India will join the select league of nations using petrol and diesel containing just 10 parts per million of sulphur as it looks to cut vehicular emissions that are said to be one of the reasons for the choking pollution in major cities.
India adopted Euro-III equivalent (or Bharat Stage-III) fuel with a sulphur content of 350 ppm in 2010 and then took seven years to move to BS-IV that had a sulphur content of 50 ppm. From BS-IV to BS-VI it took just three years. “We have as oil industry stuck to the timelines given by the government for a switchover to BS-VI fuel from April 1,” said Singh. “In fact, we had been supplying BS-VI fuel for almost three weeks now.”