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1 Dec, 2023 13:18

India’s appetite for Russian oil growing – Kpler

The South Asian nation has replaced the EU as the largest importer of crude from Russia
India’s appetite for Russian oil growing – Kpler

India boosted imports of Russian and Iraqi oil last month as refiners have been seeking better deals amid growing demand, Bloomberg reported on Friday, citing data by Kpler.

Statistics reveal that imports from Russia jumped 9.7% in November to 1.74 million barrels per day (bpd), while shipments from Iraq soared 22% to 1.03 million bpd, their highest level since May 2022. At the same time, purchases from the country's third-largest supplier Saudi Arabia plunged 26.8% to 646,510 bpd.

“In an environment when refinery margins, even for the most complex refiners across Asia, are $7-$8 per barrel, every penny of incremental profits counts,” lead crude analyst at Kpler Viktor Katona was quoted as saying. He added that India’s appetite for Russian crude will grow in December.

The report highlighted that top refiner Indian Oil had gross refining margins of $13.12 per barrel on average in the six months through September, almost half those a year earlier.

According to Kpler, total oil imports by the Asian country rose 4.4% in November from the previous month to 4.57 million barrels per day, the highest volume since July.

India boasts Asia’s third-largest economy, and is the world’s third-largest oil importer and consumer. New Delhi ramped up oil purchases after Russia rerouted supplies to the East in response to Western sanctions over the Ukraine conflict. This year, the nation replaced the EU as the largest buyer of seaborne Russian crude.