India’s crude oil production jumped by nearly 14 per cent in October on the back of higher output from Cairn India’s prolific Rajasthan fields.

Crude oil production rose for the 11th straight month to 3.24 million tonnes in October from 2.85 million tonnes in the corresponding month a year ago, according to data released by the Oil Ministry here today.

Cairn, which began crude oil production from the Barmer field in end-August last year, has already ramped up output to 125,000 barrels per day and is awaiting government approval to further augment production to 150,000 bpd.

In contrast, state-owned Oil and Natural Gas Corp (ONGC) reported a 1.6 per cent drop in oil output to 2.08 million tonnes on the back of steep decline in production from its prime Mumbai High fields. The Western Offshore fields produced 1.45 million tonnes of oil in October, 1.7 per cent more than in the year-ago period.

Oil India Ltd saw a 3.7 per cent rise in crude oil production to 311,900 tonnes during the month.

Reliance Industries was the largest producer of natural gas in the country in October, with its output rising by 6.5 per cent to 4.34 billion cubic metres during the month.

The Mukesh Ambani-run firm’s landmark D-6 field in the Krishna-Godavari Basin accounted for almost half of the natural gas produced in the country during the month. Reliance currently produces a little less than 57 million standard cubic metres per day of gas from its Eastern Offshore KG-D6 fields.

In April-October, crude oil production in India rose by 22.1 per cent to 31.01 million tonnes, even though ONGC saw a marginal drop in output to 13.51 million tonnes.

The 19 oil refineries in the country processed 4.8 per cent less fuel during October, 2010, vis-a-vis the year-ago period -- at 13.57 million tonnes -- mainly on account of a decline in throughput at public sector Indian Oil Corp and private sector Reliance’s refineries.

Reliance converted 2.67 million tonnes of crude into products during the month, 11.4 per cent less than in the same month last year, while IOC reported a 13.9 per cent decline in refinery throughput to 3.96 million tonnes.

In contrast, Essar Oil witnessed a 10.5 per cent increase in the quantum of crude oil processed to 1.27 million tonnes.

During April-October, the total quantity of crude processed by refineries in the country went up by 1.4 per cent to 93.57 million tonnes.

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