But the slowing demand seems to be clearer when compared against the first 15 days of December. According to the data, the demand for diesel in January is down by 6.6 per cent as compared to the same period of December.
The fuel sales in the country changed in the first 15 days of January after the end of the festive and holiday season. Due to the end of the holiday season, demands evaporated, taking the economy back to a pause. According to the latest market data, diesel demand has fallen 3.5 per cent as compared to the same period back in 2020. The data is showing a slow demand as compared to December 2020, when sales were as high as 97 per cent of the pre-pandemic level. Growth in the sales of petrol is also appearing to have flattened as the demand for cars dropped to the lowest in a decade. Petrol sales showed a growth of 8.5 per cent over January 2020, which is almost the same as December.
The year-after-year numbers do not seem to be alarming, partly because of the base effect. But the slowing demand seems to be clearer when compared against the first 15 days of December. According to the data, the demand for diesel in January is down by 6.6 per cent as compared to the same period of December. Petrol also sold 6 per cent less in January than at the same time a month ago.
Sales of jet fuel were also down by 48 per cent from December 2020, as there is still very less number of flights working. Here as well, changes in demand were more evident, considering sales were only 43 per cent short of the pre-pandemic level in the month of December. Compared to the first 15 days of December, sales were down nearly 5 per cent in the first 15 days of January 2021. Coming to LPG, the sales here remained positive with over 5 per cent growth over a year ago but was 0.6 per cent down from the first fortnight of December.
The demand for diesel is one of the key barometers of economic activity, and it had covered slack to reach 97 per cent of the year-ago period in December. It had dropped 7 per cent from the year-ago period in November after shooting past the pre-pandemic level for the first time in eight months in October by seeing a 6 per cent year-on-year growth.