An Overview

Petrol station
A petrol station in downtown Kolkata. There are over 64 600 fuel retail outlets across India, the majority of which are run by public sector oil companies. Indian Oil, BPCL and HPCL manage over 55 000 retail outlets. Numaligarh Refinery operates ca 80 retail outlets. The private sector and multinationals (such as Esso and Caltex) were banned to operate in the fuel retail sector from 1976 till 2002. Newcomers since 2002 include Reliance (ca 1 370 outlets), Nayara Energy (5000+ outlets) and Shell.

India is estimated crude oil reserves amoun to approx. 620 million tons in 2019 mainly in offshore oil fields in the Arabian Sea and onshore reserves in Assam and Rajasthan. India imports around 75 % of its total oil consumption. Public sector companies dominate the oil and gas sector. A few private sector companies such as RIL, RPL and Nayara Energy are investing heavily in the oil and gas sector. RIL's existing 34 MMTPA Jamnagar (Gujarat) oil refinery is the fifth largest in the world while RPL's new refinery, the sixth largest refinery in the world and located also in Jamnagar, was commissioned in 2008. India produced 34.2 million tonnes of crude oil in 2018-19. Offshore and onshore fields produced 16.9 and 17.3 million tons respectively. India's dependence on imported oil, valued at ca USD 112 billion, increased to almost 84 % in 2018-19 with a decrease in domestic oil production. Overall oil consumption increased to 212 MMT for the same year making India the third largest oil consuming nation in the world after the United States and PRC.

Onshore oil is mainly produced in Assam and Gujarat. RIL and RPL announced a merger of the two companies in 2009 positioning the company as the 13th largest oil refinerer in the world. Indian Oil, India's second largest oil refining company, is ranked 19th globally. India exported over 59 MMT of petroleum products valued at ₹ 1.96 trillion (ca USD 30½ bn in 2015) ranking India as one of the largest refined oil exporting nations.

India's oil refining capacity amounted to 249 MMTPA (Million Metric Tonne Per Annum) in 2018-19 ranking India as the fourth largest in the world after the United States, China and Russia. Total refined crude output was 257 million tons in 2018-19, ie over 100% of installed annual capacity. ONGC Videsh is a stakeholder in the multinational Sakhalin-I Project which now has begun the supply of oil to India. Indian state-owned oil companies have invested in oil and gas fields in a dozen foreign countries including Russia, Sudan, Iran, Iraq, Libya, Egypt, Qatar, Ivory Coast, Australia, Vietnam and Myanmar (Burma).

55 blocks (24 deep water, 6 shallow water and 25 onshore) for the exploration of oil and gas were on offer in the sixth auction under the New Exploration Licensing Policy (NELP) and are expected to bring investments to the tune of USD 8-10 billion. A total of 57 blocks are on offer on the 7th round of NELP.

Cairn, Oil and Gas vertical of Vedanta Limited, is the largest private sector crude oil producer in India.

Vizag refinery
A view of the HPCL refinery at Visakhapatnam.

Natural Gas

India has an estimated 1.2 trillion cubic meters of gas reserves (2016) of which approx. 60 % lie in the Krishna-Godavari basin and Western offshore gas fields. India produced approx. 33 billion cubic meters of natural gas in 2018-19.

Oil Refineries

India has 18 public sector refineries and five refineries in the private sector/or as a joint venture, the largest refineries being RIL Jamnagar (Gujarat), NEL Vadinar (Gujarat) and IOC Panipat (Haryana). Three new refineries have been proposed for implementation at Paradip (Orissa), Bina (Madhya Pradesh) and Bhatinda (Punjab). Essar Oil operates a 10.5 MMTPA refinery at Vadinar, Gujarat. RIL's and RPL's two refineries at Jamnagar have a total capacity of 1.24 million bpd, making these the world's largest combined oil refining facility. Indian Oil's Digboi (Assam) refinery, Asia's first, along with its oil field is one of the oldest continously operating refineries in the world. Total crude oil processed during 2016-17 reached approx. 245 MMTPA. Exports amounted to 68.4 MMTPA of various petroleum products valued at ₹ 3.71 trillion.

Proposed/Under Construction Grassroots Refineries
LocationStateCapacity (MMTPA)CompanyMajor StakeholdersMiscStatus
BhatindaPunjab 9 (currently being expanded to 11½) HPCL- Mittal Energy Ltd. HPCL and Mittal Energy Investment Pte Ltd - Singapore 165MV captive power plant, 1012 km pipeline to Mundra, Gujarat Operating since Mar '12
VisakhapatnamAndhra Pradesh15HPCLTotalExpansion of current Vizag refinery
BinaMadhya Pradesh 6 (currently being expanded to 7.8)Bharat Oman Refineries Ltd BPCL and Oman Oil Company LtdA 935 km crude oil pipeline from Vadinar, Gujarat to Bina, MP Completed in 2011
BarmerRajasthan 9HRRL  HPCL and Govt. of Rajasthan The ₹ 432 bn project would be Rajasthan's largest single investment. Financial closure achieved in Jan '19
KakinadaAndhra Pradesh 14 Mangalore Refinery (ONGC subsidiary) Mangalore Refinery, IL&FS, Andhra Pradesh Govt. Export oriented refinery-cum-petrochem complex, planning stage.
ParadipOrissa5Indian OilIndian OilA 15 MMTPA refinery-cum-petrochem complex slated to be completed by end 2011.
JamnagarGujarat 29 Reliance Petroleum Ltd. RPL A 29 MMTPA export-oriented refinery commissioned in Dec 2008.
VadinarGujarat 20 Nayara Energy Ltd. Rosneft and Kesani Enterprises First phase expansion includes a 450k/pa polypropylene unit. Long-term expansion includes new PRU (450k tons/pa), polypropylene (450k tons/pa) and MTBE (200k tons/pa) units.

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