Indian refiners buying oil from Russia make good economics: Global energy analyst

© Sputnik  Photo- Alexey Maishev
From less than one per cent share in India’s crude market in February 2022, Russia’s contribution to the country’s oil basket touched a phenomenal 42 per cent in May 2023.


With India’s oil imports from Russia touching a record high of 1.96 million barrels per day (bpd) last month, a celebrated Indian expert and commentator on global energy issues has backed New Delhi’s burgeoning crude trade from Moscow.

Narendra Taneja, who serves as the chairman of New Delhi-based think tank the Independent Energy Policy Institute, on Tuesday stated that Indian refiners would continue to snap up Russian oil as it makes “good economics” for them.

Taneja also noted that Russian grades were of good quality and were being made available at steep discounts compared to US Brent crude and oil from Middle Eastern nations.

Taneja’s comments come against the backdrop of India breaking all previous records regarding its oil purchases from Russia.
As per energy cargo tracking firm Vortexa, New Delhi’s oil purchases from Moscow saw a 15 per cent month-on-month jump in May compared to its figures in April.
With a 42 per cent share in India’s oil market, Russian crude imports have now surpassed the combined purchases from traditional suppliers Saudi Arabia, Iraq, the UAE, and the US.
Russia’s share in New Delhi’s oil imports is the highest of a single country in the past decade.
Despite the declining share of Arab countries in India’s oil imports, Taneja reckons that Indian refiners will continue to maintain healthy imports from traditional suppliers like Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and Iraq even if they do not offer any attractive discount on the price – which they do not.
On being specifically asked if Russian imports could breach the two million bpd barrier and accomplish a share of 50 per cent in India’s oil imports, the energy specialist noted that it depends on multiple factors, such as the price of oil in global markets, rate of inflation at home, and overall GDP growth in the country.
Russia launched its special military operation in neighbouring Ukraine last February, resulting in US and Western-imposed sanctions on Moscow.
Since then, India has become one of Moscow’s leading trade partners, purchasing Russian oil at a highly discounted price, with overall trade between the two nations touching a record level of $44.4 billion during the last fiscal.

Source- Sputnik India, 11 June, 2023.

By Pawan Atri

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