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Public Profitability of Oil-Refining PSUs

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All the five public sector oil-refining companies have turned up comfortable profits through the two decades under study in this article. Paradoxically, public profitability, the concept the authors have used here as a more appropriate indicator of operational efficiency, has declined for all these companies. This observation is supported by the upward trend in real unit cost of throughput of these companies. These disturbing findings are corroborated by strikingly upward trends in the ratios of working capital-to-throughput and gross block-to-throughput over the period. Thus the operational efficiency of the profit-making oil-refining public sector units is in serious doubt.

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