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India Reliance import less crude oil from Nigeria

by Business News Report

India’s Reliance Industries, owner of the world’s biggest refining complex, imported 2.5 per cent more crude in 2011 from a year ago while smaller Indian private refiner Essar Oil cut annual shipments by 14.8 per cent due to the closure for over a month of its Vadinar refinery for an upgrade, data from trade sources show. The two imported lower volume of crude from Nigeria

Reliance bought Hamaca crude from Venezuela for the first time in September and a rare Jubarte grade from Brazil in August this year, data showed. Other than regular grades from the Middle East, Essar however processed Nigerian Agbami and Seria Light from Brunei. Reliance’s imports from outside the Middle East included: Roncador, Marlim, Jubarte, Frade and Albacora from Brazil; Hamaca, Merey, Leona and Corocoro from Venezuela; Castilla from Colombia; Oriente and Napo from Ecuador; Maya from Mexico; Azurite from Congo; Dalia and Gimboa from Angola; Lokele from Cameroon; Zafiro and Ceiba from Equatorial Guinea; and Pyrenees and Vincent from Australia.
Following are the details of Reliance’s and Essar’s crude imports in 2011 versus a year ago, according to traders’ estimates. Volumes are in 1,000 barrels per day:
Last month Essar returned to the purchase of South American grades, buying for the first time Colombia’s Castilla grade. It also significantly raised imports from Iraq in 2011 as it has expanded capacity to 375,000 barrels per day (bpd) and increased the complexity of its Vadinar refinery, allowing it to handle nearly 87 percent of such ultra heavy grades. Reliance made its first-ever purchase of new Pazflor grade from Angola in November. Reliance has a diversified crude slate, buying 60 percent from the Middle East and about a quarter from Latin America. Essar depended on the Gulf for about 96 percent of its needs.

In Reliance’s crude slate, Saudi Arabia continued as the top oil supplier followed by Venezuela and the Neutral Zone — whose production belongs to Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. Iraq, which was at the No. 10 position in 2010, emerged as the fourth-biggest supplier, replacing Angola, which has slipped to No. 7.
Iran continued to top Essar’s crude suppliers but its share in the overall basket fell to about 43.3 percent from over 46 percent in the year-ago period due to payments problems for Indian buyers that prompted the private refiner to step up imports from Iraq, which emerged as the No. 2 supplier this year. That knocked the United Arab Emirates (UAE) into third position. Saudi Arabia, which was the third-biggest oil supplier to Essar last year, slipped to fourth, pushing out Qatar.

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