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India’s economic growth and rising income pushed up vehicle sales and fuel demand last year, with oil consumption soaring 11 percent to the highest on record, according to oil ministry data.
India’s oil products consumption increased to 196.5 million tons last year from 177.5 million tons in 2015, with transport fuels gasoline and diesel making up more than half of the country’s oil products consumption. The increase was driven by rising income, which is encouraging people to buy more passenger cars, scooters and three-wheelers. In addition, the road transportation sector is also growing fast.
Gasoline demand jumped 12 percent last year while consumption of diesel increased by 5.6 percent.
Consultancy FGE in Singapore expects India’s gasoline demand growth at 10 percent this year, and oil demand growth at 7.6 percent, senior consultant Sri Paravaikkarasu told Bloomberg.
FGE expects oil prices this year at between $50 and $60 per barrel, which is expected to drive “robust growth in transport and consumer fuels in India,” the analyst noted.
In September of 2016, India’s Petroleum Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said that he expected the demand for crude oil in the country to rise in excess of 11 percent for 2016, thanks to “better monsoon rains” and growth in economic activity. In 2015, India recorded an increase of 11 percent in the consumption of oil, versus projections for a rate of 7-8 percent. Year 2016 should see a higher increase, Pradhan said in September of 2016.
According to an India Energy Outlook by the International Energy Agency (IEA), demand for oil in India is expected to grow at the fastest pace through 2040, compared to any other region or country. Demand for oil is seen rising by 6 million bpd to reach 9.8 million bpd in 2040.
By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com
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Tsvetana is a writer for Oilprice.com with over a decade of experience writing for news outlets such as iNVEZZ and SeeNews.