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India’s Crude Oil import bill swells 76% in July

India’s crude oil import bill swelled 76% to $10.2 billion in July as compared to the corresponding month a year ago, widening trade deficit and adding pressure on the fiscal deficit for the month.

The recent surge in international oil prices had resulted in worsening of the current account deficit (CAD) and fiscal deficit for the domestic economy apart from an inflated petroleum subsidy and high inflation.

The increase in oil import bill was result of a 53% rise in brent -- the benchmark for half the world’s crude -- to $74.35 per barrel in July as compared to $47.86 per barrel during the corresponding month last year.

India meets over 82% of its crude requirement through imports. Its crude oil import bill in the first four months of the present financial year increased 59% to $39.1 billion as compared to $24.6 billion reported in the corresponding period a year ago.

The total oil import bill, including petroleum products for July, increased 67% to $11.5 billion. For the first four months of the present financial year it increased 56% to $44.4 billion.

The sharp rise in the country's crude oil bill led to its trade deficit widening to a 62-month high in July, which increased to $18.02 billion, up from $16.61 billion in June.


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