Diesel sales fall 20% in early June as demand falls amid high prices

By: |
June 08, 2021 4:00 AM

Diesel sales in May had inched up 1.4% year-on-year to 4.9 million tonnes (MT). These are the sales figures of state-run oil marketing companies (OMCs) which comprise about 90% of the total supply in the country.

The latest official sales data for the overall sector are available for April when overall consumption of petroleum products had fallen to 17 MT, the lowest recorded since September 2020.The latest official sales data for the overall sector are available for April when overall consumption of petroleum products had fallen to 17 MT, the lowest recorded since September 2020.

India’s diesel sales fell 19.7% to 762 thousand tonnes in the first six days of June, compared with the previous year, signalling reduced demand due to soaring retail prices of the fuel.

Diesel sales in May had inched up 1.4% year-on-year to 4.9 million tonnes (MT). These are the sales figures of state-run oil marketing companies (OMCs) which comprise about 90% of the total supply in the country.

The latest official sales data for the overall sector are available for April when overall consumption of petroleum products had fallen to 17 MT, the lowest recorded since September 2020.

Diesel sales contribute to around 40% of the total consumption of petroleum products and lower demand signal that the re-imposition of lockdown curbs with the second wave of the coronavirus in many areas have slowed industrial and commercial consumption.

However, an industry official pointed that the difference demand is higher also because there was no Sunday in the first six days of June 2020. OMC petrol sales in the first six days of June was 260 thousand tonnes, 18.5% lower than June 2020.

Petrol sold by OMCs in May was 1.8 MT, which was 12.9% higher than the same month in 2020. However, petrol sales remained much lower than 2.5 MT sold in May 2019 when there was no lockdown to reduce the spread of the coronavirus. As much as 6.9 MT of diesel was sold in May 2019.

Demand for the aviation turbine fuel (ATF) from OMCs in May, at 249 thousand tonnes, was 2.3 times higher than the corresponding period last year but remained 61.3% lower than May 2019 levels as several restrictions remained imposed on inter-state travel. Sales of ATF in the six days of June was 30 thousand tonnes, 14.3% lower than the same period last year. Sales of liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) was 2.2 MT in May, 6.3% lower than May 2020.

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