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India's Crude Oil Output Drops 5%, Gas Production Falls 8%
India is nearly 85 per cent dependent on imports to meet its crude oil needs. It spent USD 61.9 billion in 2020-21 on import of 198.2 million tonnes of crude oil.
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India's crude oil production fell by 5 per cent and natural gas output slumped by 8 per cent in the fiscal year to March 2021 as private and public sector firms produced less, government data showed on Tuesday.
Crude oil production fell to 30.5 million tonnes in 2020-21 from 32.17 million tonnes a year back, according to the latest data released by the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas.
Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) produced over 2 per cent less oil at 20.2 million tonnes than a year back as a nationwide lockdown that lasted over two months shut some of its fields.
Oil India Ltd (OIL) produced 5.4 per cent less oil while fields operated by private firms such as Vedanta's Cairn saw 12.6 per cent less output.
Natural gas production at 28.67 billion cubic meters was over 8 per cent less than 31.18 bcm output in 2019-20. However, output in March was 11 per cent higher as Reliance Industries-BP started output from their KG basin fields.
Gas production in March 2021 was higher 'due to new field D-34 (KG-D6 block of Reliance-BP), which started production in December 2020 with 1.3 million standard cubic meters per day, ramped up to 9.6 mmscmd in March 2021,' notes accompanying the data said.
With the pandemic pummelling economic activity, resulting in fall in fuel demand, India's public and private sector refiners processed nearly 13 per cent less crude oil at 221.7 million tonnes in 2020-21.
Reliance Industries Ltd's twin refineries at Jamnagar in Gujarat had a 11.5 per cent less crude throughput at 60.94 million tonnes while Rosneft-led Nayara Energy processed over 13 per cent less oil at 17 million tonnes.
Public sector refiners such as Indian Oil Corporation (IOC) had nearly 12 per cent less crude processing at 127.5 million tonnes.
The refineries produced 11.2 per cent less petroleum products at 233.4 million tonnes in 2020-21, the data showed.
India is nearly 85 per cent dependent on imports to meet its crude oil needs. It spent USD 61.9 billion in 2020-21 on import of 198.2 million tonnes of crude oil. This was lower than USD 101.4 billion spent on import of 227 million tonnes crude in the previous fiscal.
The lower import bill was partly due to lower volumes but largely because of lower international oil prices.
India posted a third contraction in fuel demand on record in 2020-21 with demand falling over 9 per cent due to coronavirus lockdown. It consumed 194.6 million tonnes of petroleum products in the year to March 31, down from 214.1 million tonnes in 2019-20.