India's fuel consumption jumped 23.8 per cent in May from a year earlier, continuing a recovery from a relatively low base in 2021 when the world's third biggest oil consumer was in the grip of a second wave of Covid-19.
Consumption of fuel, a proxy for oil demand, totaled 18.27 million tonnes last month, according to data from the Indian oil ministry's Petroleum Planning and Analysis Cell.
Last month's increase was the biggest year-on-year jump since April 2021. Consumption also rose modestly, by 0.4 per cent, from April.
The yearly increase is "because of a lower base, as demand in May 2021 was low due to high Covid cases at that time," although the monthly rise was surprising, said Refinitiv analyst Ehsan Ul Haq.
"However, high oil prices are likely to have an impact on consumption in the next few months. High fuel prices do not bode well for motorists all over the world," he added.
Consumption of diesel rose 31.7 per cent in May year-on-year to 7.29 million tonnes and was up about 32.6 per cent from two years earlier.
Sales of gasoline, or petrol, were 51.5 per cent higher than a year earlier at 3.02 million tonnes.