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India fills half of Mangalore SPR

12 Dec 2016 05:35 GMT
India fills half of Mangalore SPR

Delhi, 12 December (Argus) — India has completed filling half of the country's second strategic petroleum reserve (SPR) at Mangalore with Iranian crude.

India received the first cargo of Iranian crude for the country's second SPR in October with state-controlled MRPL buying a 1.9mn bl cargo for the 11mn bl SPR on the southwest coast in Karnataka state. MRPL, controlled by state-controlled upstream firm ONGC, also operates the 300,000 b/d Mangalore refinery.

The Indian government is in talks with its UAE and Saudi Arabia counterparts to fill the rest of the Mangalore SPR but the discussions have proved inconclusive. India used Iraqi Basrah Light to fill its first SPR, the 9.7mn bl facility at Visakhapatnam on the east coast inAndhra Pradesh state that came on line last year.

Delhi is also seeking crude to fill its third SPR at Padur in Karnataka, which is now expected to be ready in the first quarter of next year. State-owned Indian Strategic Petroleum Reserves has invited bids for crude to fill Padur, which has a total storage capacity of 19.4mn bl. Trading firms, financial institutions and other companies can bid to store crude in any one or more of the facility's four compartments.

The commissioning of Padur has been repeatedly delayed because of pipeline problems. The facility is connected to MRPL's Mangalore refinery, where capacity is targeted to increase to 420,000 b/d.

India has been filling its SPR sites as it works to eventually provide total cover of 90 days of net imports, including existing storage at oil firms. State-controlled Engineers India has prepared a detailed feasibility study to build another 92mn bl of SPR capacity in a second phase. Delhi expects to require around 100mn bl of additional crude storage by 2020. India relies on imports for around 80pc of its crude needs, importing around 4.3mn b/d.