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Indian Oil Demand Grows Despite Higher Prices

India’s crude oil demand has been growing this year despite consistently higher prices, suggesting that it is more resilient to price rises than some expected.

This is according to a Petroleum Economist report, citing data that showed an increase and analyst projections that suggest demand in the world’s second-biggest importer of oil is set for growth throughout the year. In order for demand to stop growing, prices would need to go much higher, the report suggested.

The report confirms an earlier forecast by the International Energy Agency that said in February that India is set to become the biggest driver of oil demand growth in the world.

“India was already the world’s second-largest crude oil net importer in 2023, having boosted imports by 36% over the past decade to 4.6 mb/d to meet rising refinery intake,” the IEA wrote in the report. It added that imports of crude are set to grow further in the coming years, hitting 5.8 million barrels daily by 2030.

Total demand for oil by that year was seen reaching 6.6 million barrels daily, an increase from 5.5 million barrels daily last year.

"India will become the largest source of global oil demand growth between now and 2030, while growth in developed economies and China initially slows and then subsequently goes into reverse in our outlook," the IEA said.

This strong growth in crude oil demand in India prompted Investing.com to suggest this week that it may delay the peak in global oil demand beyond 2030. The peak-by-2030 scenario was presented by the IEA again last year.

Yet with India’s economy on a strong growth trajectory, some expect the resulting increase in demand for things such as plastics, cars, and overall travel to continue driving global oil demand higher for longer than the next four years.

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By Irina Slav for Oilprice.com

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