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Russian oil supplies grow despite sanctions

Russian Crude oil supplies have risen by 50 per cent this spring despite sanctions imposed by G7 countries amid the war in Ukraine, The Independent reports.

An analysis of data from Kpler, a commodity tracking and analytics company, showed that nearly three-quarters of all offshore flows of Russian crude in August travelled without any Western insurance.

Such a move was a lever adopted by the G7 countries, the European Union and Australia, which imposed a $60-a-barrel price cap last December in an attempt to limit Russia’s ability to finance the military conflict in Ukraine.

The increase in supply demonstrates Russia’s ability to circumvent the restrictions and sell more oil at prices that compete with international market prices.

Russia’s oil revenues are likely to grow due to a steady rise in oil prices and a lower discount on its own crude, according to estimates by the Kyiv School of Economics.

Russia cut its exports of marine diesel and gasoil by nearly 30 percent to about 1.7 million metric tonnes in the first 20 days of September compared with the same period in August.

Importing countries expect that the Russian temporary ban on the export of gasoline and diesel fuel introduced last week will lead to a further reduction in supplies. It is noted that in April of this year, crude oil exports from Russia have already returned to the level observed before the war in Ukraine, despite the sanctions imposed by the West.

According to Kpler, India and China account for 90 per cent of Russia’s offshore crude exports. The two countries buy an average of 1.5 million barrels per day (bpd), making up for a shortfall in exports to European countries, which previously accounted for two-thirds of Russia’s crude.

However, Russian crude exports to India fell in August amid military purchases, lower discounts on Moscow grades and planned maintenance downtime at some refineries.

India increased purchases of discounted Russian oil after the war in Ukraine broke out. Imports reached record levels and Moscow became India’s largest oil supplier in terms of bpd.

Despite Western sanctions, Russia’s crude oil exports actually increased from 3.35 million bpd in 2022 to 3.5 million bpd in the first quarter of 2023, according to Kpler.


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