India’s crude oil imports jumped 14 per cent to 19.7 Million Tonne (MT) last month. In value terms, the country’s oil import bill rose 18 per cent to $9.8 billion in April, according to data published by the oil ministry. However, crude oil imports from sanctions-hit Iran dropped 42 per cent to 1.41 MT in April.
Indian Oil Corp (IOC), the country’s largest fuel retailer and the largest domestic importer of Iranian crude, has ended its term-contract with Iran for import of crude oil on the back of economic sanctions imposed on that nation by the US.
External affairs minister Sushma Swaraj, in a meeting with her Iranian counterpart Javad Zarif earlier this month, had said that the country will take a call on importing Iranian crude post general elections.
Despite US sanctions on Iran, its oil supply to India increased 6.24 per cent to 24 MT last fiscal. India managed to import a sizeable amount of Iranian crude last year primarily due to waivers and winding down period provided by US.
India’s crude oil imports from another sanctions-hit country, Venezuela, increased 28 per cent to 1.61 MT in April.
Overall, the volume of India’s oil imports had risen 2.8 per cent to 226.6 MT in 2018-19, pushing the country’s oil import dependence to 83.7 per cent as compared to 82.9 per cent in the previous fiscal.
In value terms, the country’s oil import bill last fiscal rose 28 per cent to $112 billion as against $87.8 billion recorded in the previous year. This was mainly due to the strengthening of the benchmark oil rates.
Source :- Energy.economictimes.indiatimes.com