Heat forces people to use their own cars, gasoline sales are on the rise


NEW DELHI: Gasoline sales in India grew at the fastest pace in more than two years as people opted for personal vehicles to escape the scorching heat while commuting and diesel sales rebounded due to a combination of factors – resumption of economic activities, early harvest of crops and increased use of generators due to the electricity shortage – in the first half of May.
Sales data from the three state-run fuel retailers, which hold 90% of the market, showed an increase in gasoline consumption of 122% compared to the same period of 2020 and 59.7% compared to the comparative period of 2021. Compared to May 2019, the preCovid period, growth was more modest at 16.3%.
Diesel sales were up 57.6% from the first half of May 2020 and 37.8% from a year ago, when they were down 1.5% from the pre-pandemic comparative period in May 2019. In a positive development for the refining industry, jet fuel sales increased by 492.4% during the comparative period of May 2020, when the severe lockdown had blocked all flights. But in a more realistic indication of steady growth in consumption due to the resumption of flights, sales rose 83.7% compared to the same period of
May 2021. Compared to 2019, however, sales were still down 18.7%.
Surprisingly, LPG consumption fell by 5.4% compared to the same period in May 2021 and by 11.9% compared to 2020, mainly due to a sharp increase in the price of refilling domestic gas cylinders and less cooking due to heat. However, sales were 11.9% higher than in the first half of May 2019.
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