Reliance Industries Ltd, operator of the world's biggest refining complex at Jamnagar, aims to get the first cargo of oil from its new Abu Dhabi-based trading unit in December, a source familiar with the matter said.
Billionaire Mukesh Ambani-backed Reliance group in October announced plans to set up Reliance International Ltd (RINL) to trade in crude oil, petroleum, petrochemical products, and agricultural commodities.
The conglomerate aims to get about a 500,000 barrels cargo of United Arab Emirates' Das crude from RINL, said the source, who is not authorised to speak to media.
Abu Dhabi National Oil Co (ADNOC), which has leased part of the strategic petroleum reserve at Mangalore in southern India, supplied one million barrels of Das crude from the cavern to Reliance in October and 2 million barrels in November, data from trade sources show.
India has allowed ADNOC to trade oil from the cavern.
This month, Indian refiners are snapping up February-loading Middle Eastern sour crude after spot premiums halved from the multi-month highs seen for January-lifting cargoes, trade sources said.
There are more supplies from the Atlantic Basin, while the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and their allies, a group known as OPEC+, decided earlier this month to continue increasing output by 400,000 barrels per day in January.
Reliance has bought four million barrels of Das crude for February loading at premiums of about $2 to $2.30 a barrel to Dubai quotes, trade sources said, down from premiums of more than $5 in the previous month.
Italy's Eni is supplying 1.5 million barrels, while PetroChina has sold 1 million barrels, they said. RINL, Total and Phillips 66 sold 500,000 barrels each, the sources said.
The refiner last lifted similar volumes of Das crude from Abu Dhabi in August, Refinitiv data showed.
No immediate comment was available from Reliance.
Separately, state refiner Bharat Petroleum Corp and Nayara Energy, part-owned by Russian oil major Rosneft, have bought Oman and Upper Zakum crude for February loading, while Indian Oil Corp has a tender closing on Wednesday.