Centre may soon ease PSU oil firms' spot crude purchases

Centre may soon ease PSU oil firms' spot crude purchases

The government is working on a proposal to make the process of buying spot crude by the public sector oil refining companies simpler and faster by allowing them to fix deals over tele-conference instead of tendering, a senior official at the petroleum ministry said.

    "For spot purchases, there is a thinking that you should do it over the phone through conference call," the official said. But switching from tendering requires Central Vigilance Commission’s concurrence.

“For that, we require some safeguards to ensure that the process is not misused," he said.

An industry group is working on the proposals to modify the spot buying process and it may take another two to three months to finalise norms.

Long process   

To buy crude oil from the spot market, it takes the oil companies around 15 days through the tendering process, a significantly long period in the highly volatile and dynamic global market.

  The petroleum ministry has also prepared a list to include more countries from where the public sector oil companies such as Indian Oil Corp Ltd Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd, and Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd could buy crude oil through long-term contracts. Countries such as Canada and Brazil could be added.

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