Emphasising that India has remained a regular customer of Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and the only big economy showing sustained increase in demand, petroleum minister Dharmendra Pradhan on Monday urged there should be an Asian dividend rather than Asian premium for countries in the region.
On his visit to Vienna to co-chair the 2nd India-OPEC Institutional Dialogue at the OPEC headquarters, Pradhan held a meeting with OPEC secretary general Mohammad Sanusi Barkindo and highlighted India’s promptness with payments apart from honouring its contractual commitments.
A release by the petroleum ministry said Pradhan sought due acknowledgment through discount in prices for large volumes that India imports.
The release added that for a long time, OPEC has subsidised western buyers at the cost of Asian buyers.
The meeting came two days ahead of the OPEC ministerial meeting starting May 25 to discuss oil output level by the member countries.
Pradhan also discussed the effects of the production cut of 1.8 million barrels per day by OPEC and non-OPEC countries on the global oil scenario.
Around 86% of India’s import of crude oil, 70% of natural gas, 95% of liquefied petroleum gas are from OPEC countries.
The minister also emphasised the OPEC should move towards responsible pricing which is prudent for India’s socio-economic developmental and will let the government provide provide energy to the common and marginalised people.
Pradhan is accompanied by the heads of Indian Oil, Hindustan Petroleum, Bharat Petroleum, Mangalore Refinery and Petrochemicals, HPCL-Mittal Energy, Reliance and Essar, apart from the country’s petroleum secretary and ambassador to Vienna.