Indian oil supplier: US becomes India’s second largest oil supplier, Saudi Arabia dips to fourth

NEW DELHI: The United States overtook Saudi Arabia as India’s second-largest oil supplier last month, as refiners boosted purchases of cheaper U.S. crude to record highs to offset cuts in Opec + offer, according to data from commercial sources.
The change in supply, triggered by declining demand for crude in the United States, coincided with Saudi Arabia’s voluntary reduction of additional 1 million b / d of production in addition to an agreement reached by Saudi Arabia. the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies (Opec +) to maintain lower production.
India’s imports from the United States – the world’s largest producer – rose 48% to a record 545,300 barrels per day (bpd) in February from the previous month, accounting for 14% of total imports from the last month, according to data obtained by Reuters.
In contrast, February’s imports from Saudi Arabia fell 42% from the previous month to 445,200 bpd, the lowest in a decade, the data showed.
Saudi Arabia, which has historically been one of India’s top two suppliers, slipped to 4th place for the first time since at least January 2006.
India’s oil import data by country before 2006 is not available with Reuters.
“US demand was weak and refineries were operating at low rates, so US crude had to go somewhere and Asia is the region that saw a rapid recovery in demand,” Ehsan Ul Haq said, analyst at Refinitiv.
“China didn’t take US oil because of trade issues, so India is the obvious choice,” he said.
India, the world’s third largest importer and consumer of oil, had repeatedly called on major oil producers to ease supply restrictions to help the global economic recovery and stressed that voluntary cuts in oil Saudi Arabia had contributed to a surge in world oil prices.
Iraq remained the top seller of oil to India despite a 23% drop in purchases to a five-month low of 867,500 bpd, the data showed.
Iraq has cut annual oil supplies to several Indian refiners by up to 20% for 2021, as Opec’s second-largest producer tries to meet its obligations under the group’s production deal.