India discusses ‘Oil Buyers Club' with China
With oil producers' cartel OPEC wreaking havoc with prices, India discussed with China the possibility of forming an 'oil buyers club' that can negotiate better terms with sellers as well as getting more US crude oil to Asia to cut dominance of the oil block.
As a follow up of Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan’s idea floated at the International Energy Forum (IEF) meeting here in April, Indian Oil Corp (IOC) Chairman Sanjiv Singh travelled to Beijing this month to meet Wang Yilin, Chairman of China National Petroleum Corp (CNPC), a top source said.
On discussion table was debottlenecking infrastructure to facilitate more US crude oil comes to Asia so as to cut the dominance of Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), which supplies about 60 per cent of India’s oil needs.
Production cuts by OPEC have led to international oil prices hitting a four year high last month that forced a Rs 3.8 per litre hike in petrol and Rs 3.38 a litre increase in diesel prices. Rates started to cool towards month end and retail prices have been cut thereafter.
In a throwback to 2005 when the then oil minister Mani Shankar Aiyar had proposed an alliance of the oil consuming nations, Pradhan wants to form an oil buyers club with China, Japan and South Korea to take up issues like premium being charged from Asian buyers.
At the IEF meeting, India and China agreed to join hands to have a collective bargaining power against cartelisation of oil producers.
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