Petrol sales in India recovered in August but diesel continued to show a decline over the last month as rains in several parts nicked away demand in some sectors, mainly industry data showed. Petrol sales, which had declined 5% in July, increased 5.8% to 2.81 million tonnes in August when compared with 2.66 million tonnes of demand in the last month.
The consumption was almost 16 percent higher than in August 2021 and 31.7% more than 2.14 million tonnes in the same month in 2020. It was 20.6% higher than the pre-pandemic demand of 2.33 million tonnes in August 2019. Diesel, the most widely used fuel in the country, saw consumption drop 4.9% to 6.11 million tonnes from 6.42 million tonnes in July.
The fall in auto fuel sales in July and August came after a surge in June that was supported by increased summer travel to colder areas of the country to escape from the heat and vacations during annual breaks at educational institutions. As the aviation sector opened up, India’s overall passenger traffic at airports inched closer to pre-COVID-19 levels.
With strong economic growth of 7.1%, India’s oil demand has been rising steadily since the country eased pandemic lockdowns. Cooking gas LPG sales increased by 5% year-on-year at 2.44 million tonnes in August. LPG consumption was 7% higher than in August 2020 and 2.5% more than in August 2019. Month-on-month, the demand slipped 1% when compared to 2.46 million tonnes of LPG consumption during July, the data showed.