New Delhi: Iraq has for the second year in a row has become India’s top crude oil supplier, meeting more than a fifth of the country’s oil needs in the 2018-19 fiscal.
According to data sourced from the Directorate General of Commercial Intelligence and Statistics, Iraq sold 46.61 million tonne of crude oil to India during April 2018 and March 2019, two per cent more than 45.74 million tonne it had supplied in 2017-18 fiscal. India provisionally imported 207.3 million tonne of crude oil in 2018-19, down from 220.4MT tonne in the previous financial year.
Saudi Arabia has traditionally been India’s top oil source, but it was for the first time dethroned by Iraq in 2017-18 fiscal. In 2018-19, Saudi exported 40.33 million tonne of crude oil, up from 36.16MT of oil sold in the previous year.
Iran (23.9MT) was the third largest crude oil supplier to India followed by UAE (17.49MT).
The US, which began selling crude oil to India in 2017, is fast becoming a major source. Supplies from the US to india jumped more than four-fold to 6.4 million tonne in the 2018-19 fiscal year. In 2017-18, the first year of imports from the US, the supplies were at 1.4 million tonne.
India is 80 per cent dependent on imports to meet its oil needs. Easing of western sanctions in 2015 had led to the Indian refiners raising their purchase from Iran.
Kuwait, which was the third largest supplier in 2013-14, has steadily slipped, with supplies dropping by 16 per cent in 2018-19. It had supplied 17.9 million tonne crude in 2014-15, which came down to 11.00MT in 2015-16 and 9.8 million tonne in 2016-17.