OIL DATA: India May Refinery Runs Rise 5% on Month as Demand Rises
06/27/2012| 05:45am US/Eastern
By Rakesh Sharma
NEW DELHI--India's crude-oil refinery runs in May rose 5% from a month earlier due to increased demand for fuel products during the peak summer season, provisional data from the oil ministry showed.
India's 20 refineries processed 14.80 million metric tons, or 3.5 million barrels a day, of crude oil in May, compared with 14.08 million tons in April, the data showed.
Refinery runs rose 2.9% from 14.37 million tons in May 2011.
The data doesn't include output at the second of Reliance Industries Ltd.'s (500325.BY) two refineries at Jamnagar in Gujarat state, which can process 580,000 barrels of oil a day.
The data also doesn't include production at the 180,000-barrel-a-day Bathinda refinery, which is a joint venture between Hindustan Petroleum Corp. (500104.BY) and billionaire Lakshmi Niwas Mittal.
The ministry didn't offer a reason for the increase in refinery throughput, which topped the government's estimate of 14.06 million tons.
The increase followed a 10.7% on-month decline in April, when some refineries shut down production for a variety of reasons.
India's demand for fuel products in May rose 7% from April to 13.58 million tons. Diesel fuel was most in demand as frequent power cuts throughout the country during the peak summer season forced industries and consumers to increase their use of generators.
Refinery runs at Indian Oil Corp. (530965.BY), the country's largest listed company by sales, rose 1.6% in May to 4.63 million tons, or 1.09 million barrels a day.
Runs at Reliance Industries, India's largest private refiner, were flat at 709,800 barrels a day.
Write to Rakesh Sharma at email@example.com