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China and India bought $9 billion worth of additional Russian crude in the 2nd quarter, undercutting

China and India customs data reveal that the countries ramped up purchases of Russian oil by $9 billion in the second quarter compared to the first quarter, according to a Financial Times report.

Between the two Asian nations, Russian oil imports jumped by 11 million tonnes in the second quarter.

India in particular has seen a huge uptick in volume, with deliveries of Russian crude going from 0.66 million tonnes to 8.42 million tonnes, per the FT.

Since Vladimir Putin ordered the invasion of Ukraine in February, the US and its allies have imposed sanctions on Russia. And while not all countries have directly banned Russian oil, many companies have shunned it in so-called self-sanctioning.

However, Chinese and Indian buyers have largely mitigated the effects, as the world's two most populous countries have continued to snap up crude that has traded at a discount relative to benchmark rates.

Russian oil income remains higher than it was last year because global prices have stayed above $100 for most of 2022.

For example, Tatneft, a Russian oil producer, saw profits jump 52% year-over-year for the first half of 2022, the FT reports. And last month, Russia exported more oil compared to any previous August on record, according to the Institute of International Finance.

The emergence of India and China as top importers of Russian crude has made their participation in the G7's cap on the price of Russian barrels especially important. Leaders aim to have the plan in place by December 5, when Europe's ban on seaborne Russian oil imports begins.

India is in talks to join the effort, but Putin seemed unconcerned about energy exports moving forward.

"As far as our resources are concerned, you know, the demand is so great on the world markets that we have no problem selling them," he said at an economic forum on Wednesday.


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