India’s imports in December surged nearly 70 percent from the previous month to 233,100 barrels per day (bpd), but were still down by a third from a year ago, according to the data and a report compiled by Thomson Reuters Oil Research and Forecasts.
India’s December oil imports from Iran were the highest in six months.
India, Iran’s biggest oil client after China, shipped in 208,300 bpd of oil and condensate in 2015 compared with 276,800 bpd in 2014, the data showed.
New Delhi’s imports of oil from Iran are expected to rise in the next fiscal year, beginning in April, when western sanctions are expected to be eased against Tehran.
Tehran was India’s seventh-biggest supplier of oil in the 2014/15 fiscal year, down from the No. 2 spot before sanctions.
Indian refiners, including Reliance Industries, have shown interest in raising imports from Iran, Mohsen Qamsari, director general for international affairs of the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC).