Crude oil production fell 3.6 per cent and natural gas shrank 7.1 per cent in December from a year earlier as producers struggled with ageing fields.
ONGC, the nation’s largest producer of oil and gas, registered a 2.8 per cent decline in oil production while Oil India’s output was down 16.2 per cent, according to the Oil Ministry data. Fields operated by the private sector witnessed 11.6 per cent decline in oil production.
India’s oil production has been falling for almost a decade due to ageing fields and the absence of any major discovery for years. Both state and private players have been working on investment plans to raise recovery from older fields.
Domestic gas output, however, is expected to rise in the coming months as new fields have begun production.
Refiners processed 0.9 per cent more crude in December from a year earlier. In November, they processed 5.1 per cent less crude. Growing domestic fuel demand has driven up run rates at refineries.