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BENGALURU: India, the world’s third-biggest oil importer and consumer, has diversified its sources of energy imports but will continue to buy most of its oil from the Middle East for a long time, the South Asian country’s oil minister said on Wednesday.

“I continue to maintain that the Gulf, countries of the gulf, will continue to be major suppliers and account for a large percentage of our imports for a long time to come,” Puri told reporters at India Energy Week.

He also said India will consider buying oil from Iran and Venezuela if sanctions are lifted and would continue purchases from Russia if prices “continue to be good”.

OPEC secretary general invites India to take part in next OPEC+ meeting

India has diversified its sources of oil imports to 39 countries from 27 two years ago, he said.

Rising purchases of Russian oil have reduced the share of supplies of India’s crude imports from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries to the lowest in more than a decade.

OPEC Secretary-General Haitham Al Ghais has invited India to be a part of the next OPEC+ meeting, Puri added.

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