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Crude oil imports up 9.5% to 3.47 lakh crore in April-August

NEW DELHI: India's crude oil import bill has jumped 9.5 per cent to Rs 3,47,432 crore in the first five months of the current fiscal on account of sharp depreciation of the rupeeagainst the US dollar. 

India, which depends on imports to meet 80 per cent of its needs, imported 81.499 million tonne crude oil during the April-August period, up 8.82 per cent from 74.892 million tonne in the same period a year ago, according to latest data available from the
Petroleum Ministry. 

The outgo for the imports was $60.193 billion, an increase of 3.59 per cent over $58.103 billion paid for the imports in April-August 2012. 

However in rupee terms, the increase was over 9.5 per cent - from Rs 3,17,145 crore to Rs 3,47,432 crore as the rupee has sharply depreciated against the US dollar. 

India spent $144.293 billion or Rs 7,84,652 crore in 2012-13 fiscal, up from $139.69 billion (Rs 6,72,220 crore) in the previous financial year, 2011-12. 

In the current fiscal, crude oil imports are seen rising to about 196 million tonne, from 184.795 million tonne it imported in 2012-13. 

Besides crude oil, India also imported 6.36 million tonne of petroleum products, mostly LPG, in first five months of current fiscal, the data showed. 

LPG imports stood at 2.405 million tonne, down from 2.798 million tonne shipped during the same period a year ago. 

For the product imports, the country shelled out Rs 25,046 crore extra ($4.23 billion). 

With nation's refining capacity far exceeding domestic consumption, India also exported 27.888 million tons of fuel, mostly diesel, petrol and naphtha, in April-August. These exports earned the nation $24.404 billion or Rs 1,40,212 crore, the data showed.