New Delhi: Oil and Natural Gas Corp., or ONGC, on Monday said it may enter the nuclear power generation business by leveraging a plan to explore the mineral together with Uranium Corp. of India Ltd, or UCIL, in India and abroad. The company has signed a tentative uranium exploration agreement with UCIL.
Chairman and managing director R.S. Sharma also said he favours slapping a so-called windfall profit tax on refiners. The Union government’s new ally, the Samajwadi Party, has demanded the imposition of a tax of up to 50% on profits earned by private sector refiners such as Reliance Industries Ltd amid a surge in crude prices.
Sharma suggested scrapping the system of subsidy-sharing, under which ONGC shares the burden of compensating state-run refiners for losses caused by selling petroleum products below cost. He said an oil industries development cess, along with a windfall profit tax, should be used to compensate them for the Rs245,000 crore of losses expected in 2008-09. “We are seeking a transparent and equitable system for sharing the subsidies,” he said.