Indian refiners buy the Russian cargos, available at a discount to other grades.
From a market share of less than one percent in India’s import basket before the start of the Russia-Ukraine conflict in February 2022, the Russian share in Indian imports rose to 1,62 million barrels per day in February, with a sector share of 35%.
India, the world’s third-largest crude importer after China and the United States, buys Russian oil at a discount after some Western countries rejected it to punish Moscow.
Meanwhile, Indian oil imports from Saudi Arabia fell 16% month-on-month and those from the United States fell 38%.
Russia is selling record amounts of crude to India to cover the shortfall in its energy exports after the European Union banned imports in December.
Brussels censured Russian oil shipping and imposed a price cap of $60 per barrel, which prevents other countries from using the community’s shipping and insurance services unless the oil is sold below the cap.
On the other hand, industry officials claim that Indian refiners use the dirham, the UAE’s legal tender, to pay for imported oil at a price below $60.