Indian Oil Corp, the country’s top refiner, will continue to operate its refineries below capacity in 2020/21 as it sees local and overseas fuel demand remaining subdued, IOC Chairman S. M. Vaidya said on Friday.
IOC, along with its unit Chennai Petroleum, controls about a third of India’s five million-barrels-per-day (bpd) refining capacity. Vaidya said refinery runs have declined to about 75 per cent from 93 per cent in early July on low fuel demand.
He said the operations are expected to remain at 70 per cent-75 per cent for the remainder of the fiscal year through March 2021.
“It is very difficult to predict… We don’t expect demand to recover to pre-COVID levels in the near future,” he said, adding the company could raise refinery runs to 90 per cent if demand recovers.