Saudi Arabia traditionally has been India's top oil source but in the April-January period of 2017-2018, Iraq dethroned it, supplying 38.9 million tonnes (MT) of oil, Indian Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan said on March 5, 2018.
In a written reply to a question in the Lok Sabha, he said Saudi Arabia supplied 30.9 MT of crude oil in the 1st 10 months of the current fiscal. India imported 184.4 MT of crude oil during the period as compared to 213.9 MT in the entire 2016-17 fiscal, and 202.8 MT in 2015-16.
Despite India cutting imports over delays in award of contract for a gas field development, Iran continued to be the 3rd largest supplier selling 18.4 MT during April-January. This is the 2nd year in a row that Iran has occupied the 3rd position.
Iran was India's 2nd biggest supplier of crude oil after Saudi Arabia till 2010-11 but western sanctions over its suspected nuclear programme relegated it to the 7th spot in the subsequent years. In 2013-14 and 2014-15, India bought 11 MT and 10.95 MT respectively from it.
Venezuela is India's 4rth largest supplier with 15.5 MT during April-January, followed by Nigeria with 14.9 MT, he said.
India is 80 % dependent on imports to meet its oil needs. India's dependence on the Middle East for its crude oil needs has increased from 58 % in 2014-15 to 63.7 % in the April-January period of this fiscal, Pradhan said.