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India exceeds China as top Iranian oil buyer

India has overtaken China as the top customer of Iranian oil in data published by Geneva's Petrologistics.

India imported 433,000 barrels per day in the first quarter, an increase of around 23% compared ot the same period in 2011.

Meanwhile China has decreased its imports by 40.3%, buying only 256,000 barrels per day this quarter, reflecting tighter sanctions imposed on Iran by the EU and the US.

India's minister of trade, Rahul Khullar, had previously commented that the sanctions presented India with an "opportunity".

Khullar is reported to have said,

“If Europe and the US want to stop exports to Iran, why should [India] follow suit? Why shouldn’t we tap that opportunity?”

See "Sanctions on Iran an opportunity to increase trade - India" (10 Feb 2012)

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