Indian Oil Corporation Limited has signed an agreement with a Russian oil company to import 3 million barrels of crude, sources tell NDTV.
It’s a business-to-business deal, the sources added.
While Western countries have imposed sanctions, including the US embargo on oil imports, on Russia in response to Moscow’s attack on Ukraine, there are no restrictions on Indian oil companies for the purchase of crude oil from Russian oil companies.
India’s legitimate energy deals must not be politicized, and countries self-sufficient in oil or those who themselves import from Russia cannot credibly advocate restrictive trade, government sources said yesterday.
That prompted a response from the United States, which said India importing baffled crude oil from Russia would not constitute a sanctions violation; this would involve supporting the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Asked about a report on whether India might accept Russia’s offer of cut-price crude oil, White House press secretary Jen Psaki said earlier in the week: “I don’t think it would violate that (the sanctions).”
“But also think about where you want to stand when the history books are being written right now. Support for the Russian leadership is support for an invasion which obviously has a devastating impact,” Ms Psaki added.
According to sources today, the crude oil import deal with the Russian oil company is on the best terms currently available to India in the international market. The sources added that there were no restrictions on Indian oil companies to buy crude from Russian companies.
As the United States and other Western nations imposed sanctions on Moscow, Russia began offering oil and other commodities at reduced prices to India and other major importers.
While historically India’s imports from Russia have been low due to high transportation costs, more Indian oil companies are likely to finalize contracts with their Russian counterparts for the import of crude oil into India. expectation of significant discounts.
This at a time when global crude oil prices have soared above $100 a barrel, with benchmark Brent crude hitting multi-year highs near $140 a barrel at some point since the invasion of Ukraine. by Russia.
India is heavily dependent on imported crude oil for over 80% of its energy needs and will continue to source it wherever it can access the best terms.
The agreement follows a high-level contact established between India and the Russian Federation earlier this week.
“Over the past few weeks, military action has taken place in Ukraine… The government will explore all available options. There are contacts (with Russia)… I myself had a conversation at an appropriate level with the Russian Federation. Discussions are currently underway. Oil Minister Hardeep Puri told Rajya Sabha on Monday.
“How much oil is available from Russian suppliers or new suppliers? Whenever these agreements are made between our oil companies and Russia, we will let you know. This is a dynamic and evolving situation characterized by military war “, said the minister.
Indian Oil Corporation, the country’s top energy company, has already purchased up to 3 million barrels of crude oil that Russia had offered at a discount to prevailing international rates, sources said today.