Iraq tension not to affect supply of petroleum products: Petroleum Minister

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Petroleum & Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Thursday said that the ongoing geo-political tension in Iraq will not affect supply of petroleum product in the country. He said that there is no possibility of supply disruption at present and adequate supply of petroleum products throughout the country would be maintained by the OMCs.

The Minister said this statement after reviewing the status of the availability of petroleum products in the country in the light of the on-going conflict in Iraq.

It was noted that while India imported about 13 per cent of its crude oil requirements from Iraq last year, in the current year, the Public Sector Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) had planned to import 19.4 Million Metric Tonnes, MMT (about 20% of their requirement) of crude oil from Iraq, mostly by IOCL and HPCL.

Further, it was also confirmed that against the 18.7 MMT of crude oil imports planned by these two OMCs from Iraq in 2014, 50 per cent of the contracted quantity has already been lifted. Besides, crude supplies to India from Iraq come from the Basra oilfields which are situated well away from the conflict zone in the north-eastern part of Iraq and loading of ships, including by the two PSUs, from the Basra oil terminal, continues normally.

Nonetheless, the OMCs have been asked to prepare a contingency plan both for the short and medium term including diversification of their resources for import of crude oil in order to minimize the impact of any geo-political instability in the middle-east. It was also confirmed during the meeting that there is no possibility of supply disruption at present and adequate supply of petroleum products throughout the country would be maintained by the OMCs.

Story first published: Friday, June 20, 2014, 23:00 [IST]
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