Domestic gas price to fall to $5.01/mBtu

The new domestic natural gas price to be applicable from April 1, 2015 is likely to be set at $ 5.02 a million British thermal unit. 

The government had in October last year put in a formula with trailing average of previous quarter as the domestic natural gas price applicable from November 1, 2014.

Currently, the companies are paid $ 5.6 at net calorific value. 

The NDA government had put in the new formula, which was an improvement over the Rangarajan formula by taking away indexation to the Japanese gas basket.

Any change in the natural gas prices will impact major producers, including Oil and Natural gas Corporation (ONGC) and Reliance Industries Ltd. For ONGC, every $ 1 rise in prices will mean an additional Rs 4,000 crore of revenue and Rs 2,300 crore of profit after tax, apart from rates of gas-based power plants, fertilizer costs, CNG rates and PNG prices.

The price of natural gas in India, reviewed every six months, is applicable to all gas produced from nomination fields of ONGC and Oil India, New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP) blocks, a few pre-NELP blocks and coal bed methane blocks.

Sources also said ONGC and Oil India could be exempted from paying subsidies to fuel retailers in the March quarter.

The oil ministry also asked the finance ministry for a Rs 5,000 crore ($ 798.7 million) subsidy for the quarter ended March 31, said the government source, who asked not to be named as he is not authorised to speak to the media.