Reliance Industries Ltd has cut crude oil processing at its exports-only refinery at Jamnagar in Gujarat in March by close to one-fourth as it joins public sector oil firms in cutting run-rate to align production with a coronavirus-induced slump in fuel consumption.
RIL’s 35.2 million tonnes a year SEZ refinery processed 2.51 million tonnes of crude oil into fuel in March, a drop of 24 per cent year-on-year, according to data released by the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas on Thursday.
However, the company’s older refinery at the same site processed 5.7 per cent more crude at 3.01 million tonnes.
Refiners started to cut down on crude processing only in the latter half of March after travel restrictions first imposed by states followed by a nationwide lockdown beginning March 25 evaporated fuel demand.
Fuel demand in nations where Indian refiners exported products like diesel and petrol has also stalled following the outbreak of the pandemic.