April 23, 2021 1:19:09 am
ONGC cut capital expenditure — or capex — by 12.2 per cent in financial year 2020-21 to Rs 26,441 crore, from Rs 30,115 crore in FY20, as major projects faced delays due to Covid-related restrictions. Data released by the Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell showed that Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) fell 18.6 per cent short of the targeted capital expenditure of Rs 32,502 crore for 2020-21.
State-owned refiners including Indian Oil Corporation, Hindustan Petroleum and Bharat Petroleum , however, were able to surpass targeted investments last fiscal in line with the Centre’s efforts to stimulate the economy through capital expenditure.
Project delays due to restrictions were the key cause of lower capital expenditure last fiscal, according to an ONGC official, who noted that large projects involving major expenditure had faced delays due to Covid-19.
Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had, last October, asked large state-owned corporations including those in the oil and gas sector to boost capex to stimulate the economy.
An official noted that the government has recommended that ONGC significantly boost its capital expenditure in FY22 in line with the government’s goal of boosting domestic crude oil and natural gas production.
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