India's fuel consumption rose for a third straight month in November, helped by reviving transportation and business activity, however, a year-on-year fall pointed to a sluggish economic recovery.
Consumption of refined fuels, a proxy for oil demand, in November rose 0.4% from the previous month to 17.83 million tonnes, according to data from the Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell (PPAC) of the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas released on Saturday.
Diesel consumption, a key parameter linked to economic growth and which accounts for about 40% of overall refined fuel sales in India, edged up 0.6% month-on-month but fell 7% to 7.04 million tonnes on an annual basis.
Sales of petrol rose by 0.4% from October and 5.1% from a year earlier to 2.66 million tonnes. India's daily coronavirus cases have declined steadily, although the country has the world's second-highest number of infections with more than 9.8 million cases.
Total fuel demand fell 3.7% on year in the country with the second-highest number of infections of COVID-19 in the world, after registering its first year-on-year increase since February in October, as manufacturing and services slowed with consumers stayed indoors.
Cooking gas, or LPG (liquefied petroleum gas) sales increased by about 4% to 2.35 million tonnes from a year earlier, but fell 2.9% from the previous month, while naphtha sales rose by 7.2% to 1.34 million tonnes year-on-year.