Oil storage, oil barrel, oil refinery
Representational image. Image Credit: Pixabay

India, the world's third-biggest oil importer, will support initiatives to release emergency reserves to calm prices that surged on concern Russia's attack of Ukraine will disrupt global supplies.

The government is looking out for "potential energy supply disruptions as a fallout of the evolving geopolitical situation," according to a statement from the Press Information Bureau. It will support releases from Strategic Petroleum Reserves to mitigate market volatility and calm price gains, it said.

India has space to hoard about 39 million barrels of oil for strategic purposes, the equivalent of about nine days of demand based on 2019 consumption. The country meets about 85% of its oil requirements through imports. It currently holds about 31 million barrels in the emergency caverns after it sold 8 million barrels to state refiners since last year.

The nation has yet to make good on its promise to release 5 million barrels from reserves in a coordinated move led by the US President Joe Biden rallied other consumers including Japan and South Korea to sell oil from reserves late last year to tame crude and gasoline prices.

"India stands ready to take appropriate action for ensuring ongoing supplies at stable prices," according to the statement.