MOSCOW (MRC) -- Indian refiners' crude oil throughput in September edged higher from the previous month, government data showed on Friday, as refineries boosted output to meet surging demand, reported Reuters.
Refiners processed 4.45 MM barrels per day (bpd) (18.21 MM tons) of crude oil last month, up from the 4.36 MMbpd in August, which was the lowest in 10 mos.
"Refiners have been boosting throughput in order to meet demand during the festive season. Demand is expected to increase compared to previous months, as people travel more during festivities," Refinitiv analyst Ehsan Ul Haq said.
On a year-on-year basis, refiners' crude oil throughput in September rose about 2.9%, while crude oil production fell about 1.7% to around 600,000 bpd (2.44 MM tons), the data showed.
Indian refiners operated at an average rate of 88.69% of capacity in September, up from 86.89% in August, the government data showed. India's Reliance Industries Ltd, the operator of the world's biggest refining complex, imported nearly 12% more oil in September than in August at 1.2 MMbpd.
"Coal shortages are also resulting in some fuel switching to oil-related products, which is encouraging refiners to boost runs. However, continued high oil prices have the potential to lead to some demand destruction," Ul Haq said.
India's September fuel consumption crawled higher as economic activity continued to ramp up, but soaring global oil prices pose a threat to recovery in the world's third-biggest oil importer and consumer.
As MRC wrote previously, India said Oct. 20 that surging oil prices could potentially create hurdles for a post-pandemic economic recovery, and urged the world's leading producers to take steps to potentially rectify the current supply and demand imbalances. Speaking at the India Energy Forum by CERAWeek, Indian Petroleum Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said the steep rise in prices was a wake-up call that investments need to flow into the oil and gas sector consistently.
We remind that the Indian company Nayara Energy, 49.13% of which is owned by Russia's largest state oil company - Rosneft, has launched a USD750 million petrochemical development program. Nayara Energy has the second largest refinery in India with a capacity of 20 million tons per year. The Indian company has already launched a refinery development program: within the first stage, it is planned to build units for the production of polypropylene (PP) with a capacity of up to 450,000 tonnes per year.
Ethylene and propylene are the main feedstocks for the production of polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), respectively.
According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 1,638,370 tonnes in the first eight months of 2021, up by 10% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market were 989,570 tonnes in the first eight months of 2021, up by 30% year on year. Deliveries of homopolymer PP and block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) increased, whereas shipments of injection moulding PP random copolymers decreased significantly.