Fuel sales in Jan up 6% y/y

Fuel sales in Jan up 6% y/y

New Delhi: India’s local oil product sales in January rose an annual 6%, slower than the previous month as increased power generation and late winter rains softened diesel use, official data showed on Friday.

Local oil product sales, a proxy for domestic oil demand in Asia’s third-largest oil consumer, rose to 12.05 million tonnes in January, the data showed. In December, India’s oil product demand rose an annual 7.9%.

India has revised down its annual growth rate in fuel demand for this fiscal year to 4.7% from 5.7% as a normal monsoon after last year’s drought dampened diesel demand from agriculture, which uses it for water pumps to irrigate land.

India is expected to consume 144.35 million tonnes of refined products in the current fiscal compared to initial estimates of 146.08 million tonnes, the data showed.

Diesel sales, which make up over a third of refined products consumption, rose an annual 6.3% -- slower than the previous month.

Petrol sales growth quickened in January to an annual 8.9% versus 8.7% in December, indicating that a 26.3% jump in car sales had offset the impact of a petrol price hike

India’s crude imports declined an annual 25.4% to 11.29 million tonnes or about 2.67 million barrels per day (bpd) in January, when refiners processed 8.7% more crude at 3.6 million bpd.

The data for January does not include estimated imports and exports for Reliance’s export-focused 580,000 bpd refinery at Jamnagar, in western India.

Diesel exports fell 70.6% in January, while petrol exports were down 42.5% from a year ago.

Oil products import rose 57.4% while exports fell 44.3% from a year ago.