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India’s crude oil production falls 1 per cent in April

NEW DELHI: India’s crude oil production fell 1 per cent in April after lower output from fields operated by the private sector wiped away gains by state-owned firms such as ONGC, official data showed Tuesday.

India produced 2.47 million tonnes of crude oil in April, down from 2.5 million tonnes in the same month last year, according to data released by the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas.

Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC) produced 1.65 million tonnes of crude oil in April, which was nearly 5 per cent more than the target set for it and 0.86 per cent high than the 1.63 million tonnes produced last year.

Oil India Ltd (OIL) produced 3.6 per cent more crude at 2,51,460 tonnes but fields operated by the private sector produced 7.5 per cent less crude oil at 5,67,570 tonnes.

The government has been focused on raising domestic production of oil and gas to cut reliance on imports. India imports 85 per cent of its oil needs and about half of its natural gas requirement.

Natural gas output rose 6.6 per cent to 2.82 billion cubic meters on the back of higher output from eastern offshore – home to the KG-D6 block of Reliance Industries Ltd and BP plc.

ONGC produced 1 per cent less natural gas at 1.72 bcm, while eastern offshore output jumped 43 per cent to 0.6 bcm, the data showed. The data did not give field-wise output.

With demand return, refineries processed 8.5 per cent more crude oil at 21.6 million tonnes in April.

Public sector refineries turned 12.8 per cent more crude into fuel, while private and joint sector units’ crude thruput was 1.8 per cent higher. Refineries produced 9 per cent more petroleum products at 22.8 million tonnes in April.

Fuel output from public sector units was up almost 12 per cent at 13 million tonnes, while private sector units saw a 7 per cent higher output at 9.6 million tonnes. Refineries operated at 104.5 per cent of their installed capacity to meet fuel demand in April.

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