Oil price may retard economic growth, says Mukherjee

June 12th, 2008 - 11:40 am ICT by IANS  

New Delhi, June 11 (IANS) Terming the skyrocketing oil price as externally induced, India’s External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee Wednesday did not rule out its adverse impact on the country’s economic growth. “It is clear that the oil price rise is externally induced. Increasing prices of oil (in the global market) are likely to retard growth and development,” Mukherjee said at a book release function here Wednesday evening.

“It is not only the economy of India that is bearing the brunt of the oil price hike, but the entire world economy is facing a difficult time,” he said.

Fearing that the global price of crude oil could go even up to $200 per barrel, Mukherjee justified his government’s June 4 decision to hike domestic prices of diesel and petrol by Rs.3 and Rs.5 per litre, and of cooking gas by Rs.50 a cylinder.

“The government did not have any option but to revise the price of petroleum products,” Mukherjee said after releasing “Ultimate Price: Oil and Saddam’s Iraq” by R.S. Kalha, a former Indian diplomat.

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