Fuel Sales In March Rise Beyond Pre-Pandemic Levels In India On Solid Demand And Expectations Of Rising Stock Prices

Indian fuel sales rose above pre -COVID levels

New Delhi:

Indian fuel sales soared past pre-pandemic levels in March following the twin impact of the economy recovering from the withdrawal of pandemic-related sanctions and expectations of price hikes leading to stocks.

In the first two weeks of March, traders, as well as the public, topped up their tanks in anticipation of price increases that had been delayed ahead of elections in states like Uttar Pradesh.

Although the daily price revision resumed on March 22, the increase was calibrated. Price increases simplify consumption.

Gasoline sales by state-owned fuel retailers, which control about 90 percent of the market, at 2.69 million tonnes in March were nearly 8.7 percent higher than the same period last year and 14.2 percent higher than the period in 2019, preliminary industry data showed .

Diesel, the most widely used fuel in the country, saw sales jump 10.1 per cent year -on -year to 7.05 million tonnes. This is 5 percent higher than sales in March 2019.

Gasoline and diesel sales rose 18 per cent and 23.7 per cent respectively in the first half of March when most of the hoarders on expectations of price hikes occurred.

While petrol sales were 38.6 per cent higher than sales in March 2020, diesel sales increased 41.6 per cent during the same reference period.

Month -on -month, petrol sales rose 17.3 percent and diesel sales jumped 22.3 percent.

Diesel sales in March were the highest in any month in the past two years and more than the total volume of diesel sold in April 2020 when the country was under a full curfew.

Industry sources said that despite panic buying by individual vehicle owners, petrol pump dealers topped up not only their storage tanks but also any mobile browsers or tank trucks they owned. Traders hope to make a quick profit by buying fuel at a lower rate and selling at a higher revised price.

Petrol and diesel prices hit the freeze button as soon as elections for five states including Uttar Pradesh rose in early November 2021. The record 137 -day freeze ended on March 22 and since then petrol and diesel prices have risen by Rs 6.4 per liter each.

Jet fuel (ATF) sales rose 9.8 per cent to 491,200 tonnes in March but 27.6 per cent less than the level before COVID 2019. However, the sales rose 7.5 per cent from sales in the same period in 2020.

ATF sales are expected to increase with the complete opening of air travel last week.

India has implemented a full curfew, halted flights, halted the movement of trains and roads as well as closed businesses, in the last week of March 2020, to curb the spread of coronavirus. The March 2020 period is almost normal as COVID restrictions have only just begun.

LPG sales rose 12 percent to 2.53 million tonnes in March, data showed. Cooking gas sales moderated after a price increase of Rs 50 per cylinder on March 22. LPG sales were up 17 percent in the first half of March.


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