On Friday, state-owned oil marketer Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) said that it is ready to supply low emission BS-VI fuels from April 1 and that there will be a marginal increase in retail prices.
The company's chairman Sanjiv Singh told reporters that IOC has spent over Rs 17,000 crore to upgrade its refineries to produce the low-sulphur diesel and petrol which will contain sulphur content of only 10 parts per million (ppm) against the present 50 ppm.
Singh said that there will be a marginal increase in prices of the BS-VI fuels from 1 April, when it be effectively sold throughout the country.
"But let me assure you, we will not be burdening the consumers with a steep hike," Singh said.
He said, state-run oil marketing companies (OMCs) have invested Rs 35,000 crore to upgrade their refineries, of which Rs 17,000 crore have been spent by IOC alone.
IOC switched to BS-VI fuel production a fortnight ago and all its depots and containers are ready now, Singh said. However, some remote locations, where the intake is very low, the shift will take longer.
On reports that companies will have to increase prices by 70-120 paise a litre, Singh said that to arrive at such a weighted average is not possible given the complexities of each refinery but asserted that the price hike will not be a burden on consumers.
He added that the investment was not purely on return on investment basis but a national mandate.