Report: Saudi Arabia Doubling Purchases of Cheap Russian Oil

The amount of Russian fuel oil imported by Saudi Arabia between April and June of this year more than doubled compared to last year, Reuters reported Friday.

“Data obtained by Reuters through Refinitiv Eikon ship tracking showed Saudi Arabia imported 647,000 tonnes (48,000 barrels per day) of fuel oil from Russia via Russian and Estonian ports in April-June this year. That was up from 320,000 tonnes in the same period a year ago,” the news agency reported on July 15.

Detailing the significance of the recent sales figures, Reuters wrote:

The increased sales of fuel oil, used in power generation, to Saudi Arabia show the challenge that U.S. President Joe Biden faces as his administration seeks to isolate Russia and cut its energy export revenues.

While many countries have banned or discouraged purchases from Russia, China, India and several African and Middle Eastern nations have increased imports.

Biden was on Friday visiting Saudi Arabia and was expected to seek an increase in oil supply to global markets from the kingdom to help to lower oil prices that have aggravated inflation worldwide.

The U.S. and other Western-allied nations have scaled back their Russian energy purchases since late February after Moscow launched its latest war with neighboring Ukraine. India and China have stepped in to fill this trade gap.

“The world’s second-biggest economy [China] imported about 8.42 million tons of oil from Russia last month, a 55% rise from a year ago,” Agence France-Presse (AFP) reported June 23.

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