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India Continues To Be Russia's Top Buyer As Oil Shipments Increase In Jan

Due to aggressive purchases of Russian oil in December, India's oil imports increased to a five-month high

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In order to meet the high demand in Asia and take advantage of rising global energy prices, sellers of Urals and KEBCO crude oil are expected to increase loadings from Russia's Baltic ports of Primorsk and Ust-Luga by 50 per cent this month in comparison to December, according to traders and calculations by Reuters.

According to trader statistics and projections by Reuters, India will receive about 70 per cent of the Urals oil cargoes in January. For several months now, India has been the primary purchaser of Russian grade, filling the gap left by EU purchasers.

Due to aggressive purchases of Russian oil in December, India's oil imports increased to a five-month high. China is increasing its oil purchases in physical markets and is the second-largest consumer of Urals in January.

On Monday, oil prices increased by almost one per cent to a seven-week high as the market anticipated China, the world's top oil importer, to see economic growth this year.

According to loading projections, oil shipments via Primorsk and Ust-Luga from Russia and Kazakhstan will exceed 7.1 million tonnes in January, which will be a record high.

In addition, the ports will load 300,000 tonnes of crude to make up for delayed exports in December, according to Reuters sources.

In December, merchants reported that Russia loaded 4.7 million tonnes of Urals and KEBCO from Baltic ports.

To minimise the possibility of sanctions and funding concerns, Kazakhstan last year changed the name of the oil it sells via Russian sea ports from Urals to Kazakhstan Export Blend Crude Oil (KEBCO).


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