India, along with the US, China, Japan and other major economies, will release 5 million barrels of crude oil from its emergency stockpile to lower international oil prices, the government said on Tuesday.
This is the first time that India, which stores 5.33 million tons or about 38 million barrels of crude oil in underground caverns at three sites on the east and west coasts, is releasing supplies for such purposes.
Of this, approximately 5 million barrels will be released.
“India strongly believes that liquid hydrocarbon pricing should be reasonable, responsible and market-driven,” said a government statement. “India has repeatedly expressed concern that oil-producing countries’ supply of oil is being artificially adjusted below demand levels, leading to rising prices and negative consequences.”
While the statement didn’t specify a release date, an official acquaintance of the matter said the stock could be released as early as 7-10 days.
The inventories will be sold to refineries of Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd (MRPL) and Hindustan Petroleum Corp Ltd (HPCL), which are pipelined to the strategic reserves.