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The month of August had brought the country a step closer to reaching pre-Covid levels of sales of auto fuels. A firm sign that fuel demand recovery is progressing in line with general economic recovery being seen in the country.

While sales of petrol have already crossed pre-Covid levels more than a month ago, diesel sales have begun inching up and is just 8 per cent short of touching pre-Covid levels as of August 15.

State-owned fuel retailers have sold 0.94 million tonnes (mt) of petrol between August 1-15, 2021. This is a 9.4 per cent increase over dales seen in the same period of the previous year and 3.7 per cent above 0.95 mt sales in the first half of August 2019.

With respect to diesel, the most used fuel in the country, sales have jumped 18.5 per cent to 2.11 million tonnes during August 1-15 after the second wave of pandemic and resultant lockdowns in various parts of the country affected demand and sales. In 2019, diesel sales in the first half of August stood close to 20 mt or around 8 per cent short of current figures.

Dales of auto fuel had returned to almost normal levels in March before the second wave of the pandemic started affecting demand which fell abruptly in the months of April and May. There were signs of improvement from June onwards and the trend has continued till now.

S.M. Vaidya, chairman of IndianOil had said last month that petrol demand has reached well over pre-Covid levels while diesel is fast catching up and should be above 2019 levels by Diwali. (IANS/SB)


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