Crude oil imports into Asia this month are anticipated to increase by 8.6% month over month as refineries in China and India finish up maintenance season according to Reuters' Clyde Russell.
The increase comes after a reduction in Asian crude imports in April, when the total fell to its lowest level in seven months.
The figures raised doubts about the prospects for oil consumption because Chinese economic data also pointed to a less rapid than anticipated post-pandemic rebound.
However, based on the significant recovery anticipated for this month, when Refinitiv projects total Asian imports to reach 27.73 million barrels of oil per day, refinery maintenance appears to have been the primary cause of the fall.
The data service company anticipates oil inflows into China at a pace of 11.96 million barrels per day, up as much as a million barrels per day from April.
Russian imports are anticipated to reach 2 million barrels per day, up from 1.74 million bpd in the previous month.
This month, 1.97 million bpd of Russian crude is expected to be sent to India.
Both imports from Iraq, India's third-largest supplier, and imports from Saudi Arabia, the subcontinent's second-largest supplier, are expected to decline to 570,000 bpd from 690,000 bpd in April.
Meanwhile, Reuters' Russell reports that as EU authorities grow uneasy over the fact that the fuels EU nations purchase from India are likely made from Russian oil, India's future fuel exports may be in jeopardy.
The extent of this threat, however, remains to be seen because there are few alternative sources of the quantities of gasoline that the EU continues to use despite its effort for environmental protection.
China's gasoline exports are also anticipated to decrease, but for a different cause: the year's initial batch of export limits have been used up.
Russell pointed out that decreased exports would result from a further increase in domestic demand.
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