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India Will Keep Buying Russian Oil, FM Jaishankar Says Ahead of Yellen's Visit to New Delhi

  • Sun Online Desk
  • 9th November, 2022 02:54:19 PM
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India Will Keep Buying Russian Oil, FM Jaishankar Says Ahead of Yellen's Visit to New Delhi

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India, the world's third-largest oil consumer, purchased 22 percent of its total imports from Russia in October - this despite US attempts to convince New Delhi to join a proposed price cap on Russian energy supplies.

India will continue to buy Russian oil as it ensures energy access to the population on the “most advantageous terms,” Indian Foreign Minister S. Jaishankar said on Tuesday, as he held a joint press conference with his Russian counterpart Sergei Lavrov in Moscow.

The Indian foreign minister described the energy market as “stressed,” emphasizing that under the current circumstances, it is the Indian government's "fundamental obligation" to ensure that consumers have access to the international market on "the most advantageous terms."

"In that respect, quite honestly, we have seen that the India-Russia relationship has worked to our advantage. So, if it works to my advantage, I would like to keep that going," Jaishankar replied to a journalist seeking New Delhi’s response to the West's proposal on capping the prices of Russian oil.

Jaishankar’s remarks come hours before US Treasure Secretary Janet Yellen is scheduled to arrive in New Delhi for discussions over an oil price cap and other economic issues.

Developing countries like India and China have increasingly been buying “discounted” Russian oil to keep the inflationary pressure under control.

Meanwhile, the G7 wants to keep Russian crude oil and petroleum products on the market to avoid a price spike, but at the same time limit Moscow's profits.

“The gainers from this (price cap) will be particularly those countries that do buy cheap Russian oil, and our hope would be that India would take advantage of this price cap, though its firms are bargaining with Russia,” Yellen said ahead of her departure for the Indian capital on Tuesday.

“We believe the price cap will give them leverage to negotiate good discounts from world markets. We would hope to see India benefiting from this program,” the Treasury secretary added.

India imports nearly 85 percent of its crude in order to meet its energy requirements. Russia became the largest oil supplier to India in October, surpassing Saudi Arabia and Iraq, the traditional leaders in this area, according to the energy cargo tracker Vortexa.

In October, Russia supplied 946,000 barrels of crude oil per day to India, accounting for 22% of India’s total crude imports ahead of Iraq’s 20.5% and Saudi Arabia’s 16%. India’s overall crude imports increased by 5% in October compared to the previous month, while imports from Russia rose by 8%.

Until March, India’s imports from Russia had been just 0.2 percent of all oil requirements. Saudi Arabia, Iraq, and the UAE were the top oil suppliers to the world’s third-largest oil consumer.

 

Source: Sputnik