US becomes India’s second biggest oil supplier, Saudi falls to fourth spot

Source: Business Standard, Mar 16, 2021

New Delhi: The United States overtook Saudi Arabia as India’s second biggest oil supplier last month, as refiners boosted cheaper U.S. crude purchases to record levels and to offset supply cuts from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies (OPEC+), data from trade sources showed.

India’s imports from the world’s top producer rose 48% to a record 545,300 barrels per day (bpd) in February from the prior month, accounting for 14% of India’s overall imports last month, the data obtained by Reuters showed.

In contrast, February imports from Saudi Arabia fell by 42% from the previous month to a decade-low of 445,200 bpd, the data showed. Saudi Arabia, which has consistently been one of India’s top two suppliers, slipped to No. 4 for the first time since at least January 2006.

Country-wise oil import data for before 2006 is not available with Reuters. Iraq continued to be the top oil seller to India despite a 23% decline in purchases to a five-month low of 867,500 bpd, the data showed.

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