India’s state-owned oil companies aim to sustain spending near a three-year high, encouraged by falling oil-services costs and expanding demand. The country’s largest oil refiner Indian Oil Corp. will boost domestic spending by a quarter in the year to March 31 and smaller processor Hindustan Petroleum Corp. plans to invest about 17 percent more this year. Oil and Natural Gas Corp., the biggest explorer and top spender, plans to invest as much as last year. The 11 state-owned companies spent more than one trillion rupees ($16 billion) in the year ended March 31, the highest since 2014.
“Spending by Indian oil companies has further upside over the coming years because of opportunities at home and abroad,” said Abhishek Kumar, senior energy analyst at Interfax Energy’s Global Gas Analytics in London. “Low services costs make spending more attractive now.”