NEW DELHI: Reliance Industries, owner of the world's biggest refining complex, shipped in 22 percent more oil in March compared with last year, when its imports were less due to maintenance shutdown of a few units at its 660,000-barrels-per-day (bpd) refinery, according to tanker arrival data from trade sources and ship-tracking services on the Thomson Reuters terminal.
Reliance, which has a diversified crude slate and shifts purchases to maximise revenue, bought 1.34 million bpd last month, a decline of 13.1 percent from February.
Last month, Reliance received about 89,000 bpd oil and condensate from Iran, as the Indian conglomerate resumed purchases from Tehran after a six-year-long gap. Reliance is looking for long-term supplies from Iran.
Share of Latin American and African oil in Reliance's overall imports declined in the first quarter of 2016, as the company said it shifted sourcing away from dated Brent-linked markets to Middle East sources, in the last six months of the fiscal year that ended on March 31.
Share of Middle Eastern crude in Reliance's overall imports rose to about 57 percent in the first quarter of 2016 from about 46 percent a year ago, the data showed.
During the same period, African grades accounted for about 6 percent of the crude purchased, compared with about 10 percent of last year, while Latin American oil's share slipped to about 37 percent from 44 percent.
Reliance's two advanced refineries in Gujarat can together process 1.2 million bpd of oil, or about 26 percent of India's overall capacity.