Russian oil exports reached their highest level since the start of the invasion of Ukraine in April, despite severe Western sanctions, the International Energy Agency (IEA) announced.
The international organization, based in Paris, indicates in its monthly report that “in April, Russian oil exports reached a post-invasion maximum of 8.3 million barrels per day (including refined products)”, which represents an increase in revenue of “$1.7 billion” to $15 billion.
According to the IEA, that country did not fulfill its threat to reduce production by 500,000 barrels per day. “Russia may increase its volumes to make up for lost revenue,” the agency noted.
Despite international sanctions against its oil,Russia manages to redirect its hydrocarbon exports to other countries (China, India and Turkey) but “seems to have some difficulties in finding buyers for its crude oil and petroleum products,” the report qualifies.
Since the sanctions imposed on Russian crude oil transported by sea on December 5, a second European Union (EU) embargo on purchases of Russian oil products has been in force since February 5, added to a price ceiling for these products applied by the G7 countries (Germany, Canada, the United States, France, Italy, Japan and the United Kingdom).
In retaliation for these sanctions, enacted in response to Moscow’s offensive against Ukraine launched in February 2022, Russia warned on February 10 that it would reduce its production by 500,000 barrels per day.
The issue of loopholes that allow Moscow to mitigate the impact of G7 sanctions on its economy will be discussed at a summit of leaders of industrialized countries to be held starting Friday in Japan.
The Indian door to Russian oil
The European Union should crack down on India reselling Russian oil to Europe as refined fuel, including diesel, EU foreign policy chief Josep Borrell meanwhile said in an interview with the Financial Times.
India has become one of the main buyers of Russian oil in the last year following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine on February 24, 2022. Access to cheap Russian crude has boosted production and profits at Indian refineries, allowing them to competitively export refined products to Europe and the United States.
Borrell told the newspaper that he will raise the issue with India’s Foreign Minister Subrahmanyam Jaishankar when they meet on Tuesday. “If diesel or gasoline enters Europe… from India and produced with Russian oil, that is certainly a circumvention of sanctions and member states must take action,” the EU chief diplomat said.
“India buying Russian oil, it’s normal… But if they use that to be a center where Russian oil is refined and they sell us by-products… we have to act,” Borrell said.
Indian refiners, which previously rarely bought Russian oil due to high transportation costs, imported 970,000-981,000 bpd in fiscal year 2022/23 (April-March), accounting for more than a fifth of total oil imports. country fuel.
Russia’s largest oil producer Rosneft and India’s top refiner Indian Oil Corp have also signed a forward agreement to substantially increase and diversify oil grades delivered to India.
According to Kpler ship tracking data, Reliance Industries and Nayara Energy were the top exporters of refined fuels and buyers of Russian oil.
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