India, Iran’s largest oil customer after China, shipped 5.67 million tons or about 457,000 barrels per day (bpd) of the country’s oil in the first three months of this fiscal year, Dharmendra Pradhan told lawmakers in a response written.
He did not provide comparable numbers from the previous year’s period. The data compiled by Reuters shows that India imported about 3.46 million tons, or about 279,000 bpd, of Iran between April and June of last year.
State refineries, which account for about 60 percent of India’s refining capacity of 5 million bpd, had held back imports from Iran last year in protest against Tehran’s measure to grant development rights to the giant oilfield. Gas Farzad B to other parties.
The refineries – Indian Oil Corp, Chennai Petroleum Corp, Bharat Petroleum and its Bharat Oman Refineries Ltd unit, Hindustan Petroleum and Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals – shipped in 9.8 million tonnes of Iranian oil in 2017/18, about a quarter less than a year ago, Pradhan’s response showed.
For this fiscal year, the refiners had decided to almost double Iran’s imports, which offered almost free shipping and an extended credit period for oil sales.
Iraq continued to be India’s main supplier of oil in the period from April to June. New Delhi shipped 7.27 million tons of oil from Iraq, while shipments from Saudi Arabia totaled 5.22 million tons, making it the third largest supplier, according to the Pradhan statement.
India and other major buyers of Iranian oil are under pressure to cut off imports from the country after Washington pulled out of a 2005 nuclear deal with Tehran in May and decided to impose sanctions on OPEC members.
Reuters reported last month that India had asked refiners to prepare for drastic reductions or even reduce imports of Iranian oil.
The first set of sanctions will go into effect on August 6 and the rest, especially in the oil sector, after a “settlement period” of 180 days that will end on November 4.
“Indian refineries import crude oil from various sources, including Iran, depending on technical and commercial considerations,” Pradhan said, without explaining whether the refiners would cut imports from Tehran.
India’s total oil imports from Iran in June fell by 16 percent since May, when refiners began to wean their plants from Iran’s crude to avoid US sanctions.