India’s fuel consumption fell for the second month in a row in February to its lowest since September last year as record-high retail prices continued to stonewall a demand recovery for the world’s third-biggest oil importer and consumer.
Consumption of fuel, a proxy for oil demand, fell 4.9 per cent to 17.2 million tonnes year-on-year in February, data from the Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell (PPAC) of the Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas showed on Thursday.
On a monthly basis, demand slipped by 4.6 per cent.
“Prices have to come down or coronavirus cases should reduce before we see a real recovery, as some people are still reluctant to travel” said Refinitiv analyst Ehsan Ul Haq.
In January, India had registered its first month-on-month decline in five months.
Gasoline and gasoil prices in India have risen to record highs, mirroring global markets. ]
Earlier this month, India said a decision by major producers to extend oil output cuts could derail any consumption led-recovery in some countries since it keeps global prices elevated.