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Russia Becomes India’s Top Oil Supplier In October

Surpassing traditional suppliers Saudi Arabia and Iraq, Russia has emerged as the top oil supplier to India in October. This comes amid an ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine that has also seen many Western nations issue sanctions against Russian Federation.

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About The Trend:

The data shows that Russia, which made up for just 0.2 per cent of all oil imported by India in the year to March 31, 2022, supplied 935,556 barrels per day (bpd) of crude oil to India in October — the highest ever. Russia now supplies almost 22% of India’s total crude imports, ahead of Iraq’s 20.5 per cent and Saudi Arabia’s 16 per cent.

About The Time-Line:

India’s appetite for Russian oil swelled ever since it started trading on discount as the West shunned it to punish Moscow for its invasion of Ukraine.

India imported just 36,255 barrels per day of crude oil from Russia in December 2021 as compared to 1.05 million bpd from Iraq and 952,625 bpd from Saudi Arabia. There were no imports from Russia in the following two months but they resumed in March, soon after the Ukraine war broke out in late February. India imported 68,600 bpd of Russian oil in March while it increased to 266,617 bpd in the following month and peaked to 942,694 bpd in June. But in June, Iraq was India’s top supplier with 1.04 million bpd of oil. Russia in that month became India’s second biggest supplier.

Imports dipped marginally in the following two months. They stood at 876,396 bpd in September before rising to 835,556 bpd in October.

Other Peers Place:

Iraq slipped to No.2 slot with 888,079 bpd of supplies in October, followed by Saudi Arabia at 746,947 bpd.

What Is The Govt Instance:

The Indian government has been vehemently defending its trade with Russia, saying it has to source oil from where it is cheapest.  On being asked if India faces a moral conflict due to import from Russia amid the latter’s conflict with Ukraine, he had stated: “Absolutely none. There is no moral conflict. We don’t buy from X or Y. We buy whatever is available. Government does not buy, it’s the oil companies which do the buying.”

India has also remained non-committal on a plan proposed by the G7 group of nations (UK, US, Canada, France, Germany, Italy and Japan) to cap the price of oil purchased from Russia as a means of limiting Moscow’s revenue.

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