MOSCOW (MRC) -- India's daily oil imports from Iran in August surged to their highest in at least 15 years as the OPEC producer boosted its shipments to recoup market share ceded to rivals Saudi Arabia and Iraq under pressure from economic sanctions, reported Reuters.
Private refiner, Essar Oil, was the top Indian client of Iran in August, followed by Indian Oil Corp. and Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd.
India received about 576 Mbpd of Iranian oil in August, up about 10% from July, according to trade sources and ship arrival data compiled by Thomson Reuters Supply Chain & Commodities Research.
The August imports from Iran are likely a record, although reliable data is available only back to 2001.
Iran used to be India's second-biggest oil supplier - a position now held by Iraq - before sanctions aimed at Tehran's nuclear program began undercutting its petroleum trade.
The sanctions were lifted in January, and in August, Iran's crude exports, excluding condensate, rose to near pre-sanctions levels at 2.11 MMbpd, with loadings headed for India surpassing those for China, Tehran's top oil client.
India's oil imports from Iran last month were nearly triple the 199 Mbpd taken in August a year ago, according to the tanker arrival data.
In April-August, the first five months of India's current fiscal year, Iran's share in its overall imports surged to 10.7%, its highest since 2010/11.
India's Iran oil purchases rose nearly 70% to 451 Mbpd over those five months from about 266 Mbpd in the same period a year ago, the data showed.
India's oil imports from Iran are set to surge to a seven-year high in the year that began April 1, with the nation's state-owned and private refiners together buying at least 400 Mbpd on average.
In the first eight months of 2016, India's oil imports from Tehran rose 84% to about 395 Mbpd, the data showed, in comparison with 214 Mbpd a year ago.
As MRC informed previously, as of 2015, number of active Iranian Petrochemical complexes were 53, with total production capacity of 59 million metric ton, producing range of polymers, chemicals, aromatics & liquid gas, located mainly at Iranian south region, next to Persian Gulf, called Assaluyeh and Mahshahr Special Economic Zones.
At the moment, there are 67 developments projects in the country which are under construction, adding 61 million metric ton on total production and estimated to fully run till 2018.