Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan who is on a three-day visit to Moscow met with his Russian counterpart Alexandar Novak on Friday. Pradhan, in reference to the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), stated that high oil prices set by the organisation could have a regressive effect. Pradhan urged Novak to use his influence with regards to OPEC to keep an equal footing when it comes to the supply of oil to the global market. India has been conducting talks with Russia seeking a normalisation in oil prices along with equal and fair distribution of it.
India is the worlds third-biggest oil importer and also the third-biggest consumer. The erratic pricing of petroleum has affected the countries that import oil. India has been pressing the OPEC to ensure that they price oil and gas responsibly, as the rates are disconnected from the market foundations affecting the countries that import petroleum. Russia, which along with the OPEC nations forms OPEC+, is influential in determining global crude rates.
''Discussed with Minister Novak about the price volatility in the global oil market that is hurting the interests of both consuming and producing nations,' Pradhan said in a tweet, adding, 'Also conveyed our expectation that Russia, as a member of the OPEC Plus, can play an important role in balancing global oil market both in terms of ensuring adequate supply as well as in having a responsible and reasonable price.''
OPEC is an intergovernmental organisation of 14 major oil-producing nations which has a an almost monopolistic influence in the determination of petroleum prices. India, which is reliant on imports to meet its petroleum needs, has regularly tried to impress upon OPEC its huge responsibility when it comes to the distribution of petroleum, given the grouping's capability to impact an importing nation's economy. Pradhan, remarking on his meeting with Novak, stated that they had an interesting discussion about OPEC and the subsequent alterations that need to be made. India also notified Russia about the interest of Indian firms to invest in Russian oil and gas fields.
(Inputs from PTI)