Russian oil exports shot up to their highest levels since its invasion of Ukraine, with the majority heading towards China and India, according to the International Energy Agency.
In its latest monthly oil report, the Paris-based climate agency said total oil shipments reached “a post-invasion high” in April rising to 8.3m barrels per day (bpd), up from 7.7m bpd in April last year.
It estimated that the country’s oil export revenues increased last month by $1.7bn to $15bn, though this was still 27 per cent lower than the same month last year, as oil prices have fallen.
It added that Russia may not be following through on a previously agreed 500,000 bpd output cut in full, which was agreed in a bid to lift prices.
“Russia may be boosting volumes to make up for lost revenue,” the IEA said, adding that “Russia seems to have few problems finding willing buyers for its crude and oil products”.
Most of that demand is coming from China and India, the group said.
Of the 5.2m bpd of Russian crude oil exports in April, 2.1m bpd went to China and 2m bpd went to India – together accounting for nearly 80 per cent.
The data shows that Russia is still successfully exporting oil and finding buyers despite Europe’s decision to block oil imports in response to the country’s invasion of Ukraine.