German oil imports up 13.5% in January-July period; bill more than doubles

Oil depots are pictured in the harbour in Hamburg, Germany, March 8, 2022. REUTERS/Fabian Bimmer

FRANKFURT, Sept 23 (Reuters) - German crude oil import volumes rose 13.5% in the first seven months of 2022 on a year-on-year basis as the economy recovered from the COVID-19 pandemic, while the bill more than doubled due to higher prices, official data showed on Friday.

Russia remained the top supplier, holding a 30.5% share of Germany's oil imports in the period, monthly statistics from the BAFA foreign trade office showed.

The German government is resolved to eliminate imports of oil from Russia by the end of the year under European Union sanctions imposed in the wake of the Russia's Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine. A week ago, it took control of a major Russian-owned oil refinery at Schwedt in eastern Germany. read more

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Some 23.6% of imports in the January-July period came from the British and Norwegian North Sea, while imports from members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) contributed 16.0%.

The rest was shared among other sources, including Kazakhstan and the United States.

Reuters Graphics

BAFA releases import data with a two-month delay.

The impact of the invasion of Ukraine, which has led to economic sanctions on Russia and counter actions in energy flows, is appearing only gradually.

Oil imports in January through July from all origins increased to 51.0 million tonnes, from 44.9 million in the same months of 2021, BAFA said.

Germany spent 35.9 billion euros ($35.07 billion) on crude oil imports in the first seven months of 2022, 100.6% more than the comparable year-earlier period.

The average price paid per tonne on the border rose 76.4% over the same period a year earlier, standing at 702.95 euros, BAFA said.

Oil prices on Friday fell to levels not seen since January on recession fears, after central banks around the world hiked interest rates as part of an effort to curb high inflation. There are widespread fears that the monetary policy tightening will reduce economic activity, curbing fuel demand.

($1 = 1.0235 euros)

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Reporting by Vera Eckert and Nerijus Adomaitis; editing by Paul Simao

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