“We wanted to get cheap Russian crude oil just like India,” says Imran Khan
10 April, 2023 | Vaishali Sharma
Former Pakistan Prime Minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) head Imran Khan praised India’s foreign policy, saying that Islamabad “wanted to get cheap Russian crude oil just like ...
Former Pakistan Prime Minister and Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) head Imran Khan praised India’s foreign policy, saying that Islamabad “wanted to get cheap Russian crude oil just like India” but was unable to do so since his administration was defeated in a no-confidence vote.
Addressing the nation in a video message, he said, “We wanted to get cheap Russian crude oil just like India but that could not happen as unfortunately, my government fell due to a no-confidence motion.” Notably, he was the first Pakistani PM to visit Moscow in the past 23 years, Khan could not broker any deal that could give relief to the cash-strapped country.
Pakistan is experiencing its greatest economic crisis in history, and Khan bemoaned the fact that his country could also acquire Russian crude oil at a low rate that India enjoys despite the continuing Ukraine conflict.
It’s also worth noting that he was in Russia on the day the conflict began last year. In the video, he mentions his meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
However, this was not Khan’s first time recognising India’s achievements in terms of economic growth and acquiring Russian oil against Western pressure.
“No other leader except Nawaz in the world has properties worth billions. Tell me about one country whose Premier or leader has billions worth of properties outside the country. Even in our neighbouring country, how many properties does PM Modi has outside India?” he had said at a public gathering in September 2022.
Earlier in May 2022, Khan hailed Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s decision to purchase cheap oil from Russia despite pressure from the United States.
“Despite being part of the Quad, India withstood US pressure and bought cheap oil from Russia to facilitate its people,” tweeted Imran, adding, “Our government was trying to achieve this through an independent foreign policy.”
India is the world’s third-largest consumer and importer of oil. It imports 85% of its crude oil requirements. During the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, the West and Europe have put strict sanctions on Russia’s energy. As a response, Russia has increased its discounts to its oldest ally, India.
Penalties have been imposed. Russia inked an agreement with an Indian oil company to increase crude oil delivery. According to the Russian news agency, TASS, Moscow’s top oil giant Rosneft reached an agreement with the Indian Oil Corporation to enhance the supply of petroleum to India.