India's oil imports from Iran surge marginally in Jan
The Dollar Business Bureau
Oil imports of India from Iran surged marginally in the month of January from the previous month as the refiners from India received entire volumes from major OPEC (Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries) producers Iraq and Saudi Arabia, as per the shipping data.
Iran used to be the second largest supplier of oil to India, but now this position belongs to its regional-competitor Iraq after the West imposed strict sanctions on Tehran over its nuclear programme, which limited its exports and accessibility to finance.
In January 2017, Iran was India’s third largest oil supplier after Saudi Arabia, followed by Iraq.
Oil imports of India from Iran have increased sharply after the sanctions were removed last year.
In the said month, oil imports from Iran have increased three-folds against the same period a year ago, surging to 554,600 barrels a day, as per the ship tracking data given out on Wednesday.
In first ten months of the current financial year 2016-17, during April-January, Iranian imports stood at 532,800 barrels a day as compared to around 228,600 barrels a day in the same period in the previous year. Average volumes of oil supplied by Iran to India in the ten month period are the highest till date.
India’s refiners such as Reliance Industries Ltd, operating the world's largest refinery complex at Jamnagar (Gujarat), had stopped importing oil from Iran during sanctions and have now returned as importers.
In January, Indian oil imports from Brazil touched higher numbers since April 2015, whereas oil imports from Venezuela declined, nearly matching the import numbers seen in August 2016.
Oil imports from Nigeria to India plunged 54% in January, due to the militant attack on the country’s key oil pipeline Trans Forcados Pipeline, compared to a year ago. This forced major Indian clients, especially government-run oil firms, to turn to Angola, which resulted in a 70% increase in India’s imports from Angola.