India may announce steps to cut fuel use this month
NEW DELHI (Reuters) - India could announce steps to curb fuel consumption on Sept 16, Foreign Minister Salman Khurshid said on Friday, in a bid to cut the biggest item in the country's import bill and help support a rupee skittering just above record lows.
The world's fourth-biggest energy user is widely expected to announce a steep hike in diesel prices soon, as it looks to cut oil costs by nearly US$20 billion (S$25.7 billion). Rising global prices of crude and the rupee's slide have left India facing an oil bill potentially 50 per cent higher than on May 1.
"No matter what happens, we will have to cut down on fuel consumption," Mr Khurshid told business channel CNBC TV18. "You can't keep subsiding costs of fuel and not restrict the use of the fuel."
Oil Minister M. Veerappa Moily could unveil fuel-saving measures when he returns from a trip next week to Japan and South Korea. Mr Khurshid gave no details of the possible steps.