The government has reduced the prices of fuel oil by Tk 5 a litre 23 days after raising the prices by as much as 51.68 percent.
The new prices of diesel, kerosene, octane and petrol will be effective from Monday night, said State Minister for Power, Energy and Mineral Resources Nasrul Hamid.
The decision to cut the prices came after the authorities on Sunday lowered the duty on diesel imports to 5 percent from 10 percent. The finance ministry also waived advance tax on diesel imports.
Officials at the National Board of Revenue said the latest decisions mean taxes for diesel imports have been reduced by 11.25 percentage points to 22.75 percent overall.
As production and transport costs went up due to the fuel oil price hike, traders raised prices of all commodities, from bus fares to the prices of rice and eggs.
To cool off the prices of rice, the government on Sunday lowered the regulatory duty on rice imports to 5 percent from 25 percent and waived all import duties.
Earlier in the day, Bangladesh Petroleum Corporation Chairman ABM Azad said the price of refined diesel was $132 per barrel in the international market on an average in the past 28 days.
It meant the state-owned corporation had to concede a loss of more than Tk 8 per litre even after diesel price was raised, Nasrul said, speaking at the press conference.
“Oil prices have increased past $150 per barrel, which was $130 some days ago. How much would we be able to readjust the prices now? Because we will need huge subsidies again.”
“We didn’t expect oil prices to rise. Now we fear the prices will increase further.”