New Delhi: The Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas on Wednesday strongly objected to the insinuation of illegality by a report of CREA (Center for Research on Energy and Clean Air) regarding India’s purchase of crude oil from Russia at a cheaper price and the subsequent sale of refined products to some of the coalition countries.
Reacting strongly to this, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas said via Twitter, ‘report is misleading and is a deceptive effort to tarnish India’s image, the 4th largest oil refining country globally. It shows a lack of understanding of global supply demand dynamics and India’s long history as a major refined products exporter’.
The Helsinki-based CREA in a report on May 1 said that India is among the top five countries, including China, that is purchasing cheap Russian crude oil and converting it into refined petroleum products,which are then being exported to some European and G7 countries. Responding to this, the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas said as a sovereign country, India is free to import or export goods and commodities within the terms of international law and calling its legitimate business as‘laundromat’ implies an “illegal” activity, to which India strongly objects.
The ministry said, “Import of crude oil below $60 barrel from Russia or other places does not come under any international embargo. There are also no self-imposed restrictions by the ‘coalition countries’ on buying diesel from refiners across the world.To use the word like ‘whitewashed oil’ is disingenuous at best or mischievous at worst.”
The ministry further said India meets its energy requirements throughimports from many countries, including Russia, and India has never shied away from this fact nor is it apologetic about it as evidenced by multiple ministerial statements over last year.