Indian refiners processed 21.94 million mt, or an average 5.2 million b/d, of crude oil in January, down 3.6% year on year, latest data from the oil ministry showed, reflecting a partial shutdown at private refiner Reliance Industries Ltd.
The December figure was 4.3% higher than in December.
The average utilization rate of refiners was 104.4% in January, compared with 100% in December, and 114.6% in January 2018.
Analysts said the decline in overall crude processing last month was mainly due to the maintenance shutdown of a crude distillation unit and the coker unit at RIL’s domestic-focused refinery at Jamnagar in Gujarat state for about four weeks from January 16.
In January, RIL’s domestic-focused refinery operated at 79% of capacity as compared to 104.5% level in the year-ago month.
The country’s total refinery throughput in January rose 4.3% from December, as private refiner Nayara Energy ran at full capacity after restarting from a full turnaround.
Nayara Energy operated at an average 100% capacity in January, up from 28.4% in the previous month.
India’s crude oil production in January fell 4.3% year on year to 2.85 million mt or 674,000 b/d. January crude output was 0.5% lower than December.
Natural gas production in January rose 5.5% year on year to 2.78 Bcm and down 0.9% from December.
India’s refineries — state-owned and private — processed 251.9 million mt of crude in the 2017-18 (April-March) financial year.
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