Indian Oil Corp , the country's largest state-owned refiner, has bought 1 million barrels of Murban crude via a tender, a rare purchase of a high-sulphur grade from the spot market, trade sources said on Friday.
The refiner typically buys low-sulphur crude through its monthly tenders, but it received an attractive offer for the Murban cargo due to lower demand from North Asian refiners as several plants are scheduled to shut for maintenance in the second quarter.
IOC bought the Murban cargo which will load in March, the sources said. The seller of the cargo and its price were not immediately available.
IOC, which meets about half of the country's domestic fuel demand, along with its subsidiary, Chennai Petroleum Corp , controls 10 refineries accounting for about 31 percent of the national capacity of 4.3 million barrels per day (bpd).