- India may consider buying crude oil from Russia at discounted rate, reports said
- Moscow has urged India to increase its investments after sanctions over its oil-gas exports
- Union Petroleum Minister said govt looking for an alternate market for fuel purchase
India may consider buying crude oil from Russia at discounted rate amid tough sanctions from US, according to Reuters. Amid Russia-Ukraine war and sanctions imposed by the West, Europe against Moscow, the Russian economy is in shambles impacting its oil-gas export business.
At the same time, when oil prices are soaring high, India is planning to purchase discounted crude oil and related commodities from Russia with with payment via rupee-rouble transaction, Reuters report said.
As Russian economy faces its worst since 1991, Moscow has urged India to increase its investments after sanctions over its oil-gas exports.
Russia Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak in a statement said that Russia's oil and petroleum product exports to India have approached $1 billion and there are opportunities to increase it further.
Meanwhile, Union Minister for Petroleum Hardeep Singh Puri on Monday informed the Rajya Sabha that the government is looking for an alternate market for fuel purchase amid the ongoing Russia-Ukraine conflict.
Responding to a question during 'Question Hour', he said that the government has been exploring all options such as currency to facilitate purchase, supply of oil in markets, insurance and freight.
In response to Congress lawmaker Shakti Singh Gohil's question whether the government intends to reduce diesel rates, the Minister said that the prices of diesel were deregulated. "Whenever we felt that the common man needed more relief, we went ahead and reduced the price. In November 2021, we brought down the fuel prices by Rs 10," Puri said in the House.
Congress MP KC Venugopal said that petrol prices have increased 63 times and diesel 61 times. He also said that since November, the government has not hiked the price and asked whether the price will remain the same or will be a hike or not.
The Petroleum Minister also informed that Venezuela is a country which was subjected to sanctions by another country. He further said that there was hope and expectation that oil from other sanctioned countries would become available, the Organisation of Oil Exporting Countries (OPEC) countries would increase their oil production and there would be persuasion by the international community in this regard.
Puri also said that neither the union government nor the oil companies are going to float oil bonds.
"All legitimate steps would be taken to maintain prices of oil," he said.
(With inputs from IANS)