Indian imports of Russian oil continue to surge – media
Russian oil exports to India skyrocketed to 37 million tons in the first five months of the year, the Vedomosti news outlet reported on Wednesday, citing data from the Indian Ministry of Industry and Trade.
According to the data, export volumes exceeded last year’s deliveries during the same period by nearly 11 times, and topped flows for the whole of 2022. Last year, India imported 33.4 million tons of Russian crude.
During the reporting period, Russia has secured the title of India’s top crude supplier, followed by Iraq (21.4 million tons) and Saudi Arabia (17.5 million tons).
According to commodities analytics firm Kpler, Indian imports of Russian crude continued to grow during the summer, climbing to a record high of 2.2 million barrels a day in June and surging for 10 consecutive months.
Deliveries have somewhat declined in July, to an average of 1.9 million barrels, according to a separate report by the Morning Express newspaper published earlier this week. Analysts attribute the drop to production cuts agreed by the OPEC+ group, under which Moscow has pledged to reduce output by 500,000 barrels per day.
Moscow began to redirect oil flows to Asia last year in response to Ukraine-related Western sanctions, which included an oil embargo and a price cap on Russian crude and petroleum products. India, the world’s third-largest oil importer and consumer, has become one of Russia’s largest oil buyers, refusing to join sanctions and taking advantage of discounts offered by Moscow. New Delhi did, however, pledge not to violate the Western price ceiling for Russian crude set at $60 per barrel excluding shipping, freight, customs and insurance costs.
According to Kpler data, Russia accounted for 46% of India’s total oil imports in May, compared to less than 2% prior to Western sanctions.
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