Transport fuels’ July demand rises 5.5 percent

New Delhi, Aug 17 (IANS) India’s transport fuels consumption in July at 14.03 million tonnes increased by 5.52 percent over the same month last year on the back of higher petrol sales, official data showed on Monday.

Data released by the Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell showed sales of petrol last month rose 12.9 percent year-on-year, that is explained by previous data showing a rise in passenger vehicle sales by 11.43 percent.

Instead, diesel sales last month declined in July to 5.7 million tonnes recording a fall of 0.55 percent from the same month a year ago.

Domestic LPG, or cooking gas, sales last month jumped 10.4 percent, while kerosene, demand for fell 2.52 percent.

The data comes in a context where, after having dropped below the psychological $50-a-barrel-mark earlier in the week, the Indian basket of crude oils closed at $48.85 on its last trading on the eve of Independence Day.

State-run Indian Oil Corp followed with an independence day gift, cutting prices of petrol by Rs.1.27 a litre and of diesel by Rs.1.17, both at Delhi with corresponding reduction in other states.

“Since last price change (August 1), there has been a decrease in international prices of both petrol and diesel,” the IOC said.

It was the second time this year that oil was breaching the $50-mark, from levels above $100 last year.

The basket of 12 crude oils of the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) closed at $46.62 for a barrel of nearly 160 litres on Friday, compared to $47.28 on Thursday.

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