|Italy ups Iran crude oil imports in May||
MILAN, (Reuters) - Italy's imports of crude oil from Iran, one of its main suppliers, spiked in May helping to offset a lack of crude from Libya, data from industry body Unione Petrolifera (UP) showed on Thursday.
Italy, which depends heavily on energy imports because of scarce natural resources, boosted crude imports from Iran to 1.19 million tons in May from 765,700 tons in April, the data showed.
Imports from Iran accounted for 11.6 percent of Italy's total oil imports in the first five months of 2011 which rose 3.7 percent year on year to 29.31 million tons.
Italy stopped importing crude oil from Libya, another sanction-hit major supplier, in April due to the conflict there.
However, Libya still remained Italy's third-biggest supplier, accounting for 12.9 percent of total crude imports in the first five months of 2011, after Azerbaijan with 18.0 percent and Russia with 15.9 percent, the data showed.
Imports from Azerbaijan rose to 1.21 million tons in May from 1.16 million tons in April.
The UP did not give a country-by-country comparison with the first five months of 2010.
In the first four months of 2011, imports of semi-finished oil products from Libya to Italy dropped 25.1 percent year on year to 130,000 tons, while total imports of such products to Italy fell 20 percent to 1.79 million tons.
Italy's refining output fell 2.7 percent year on year in the first five months of this year to 35.2 million tons, when 79 percent of the total refining capacity of 106.6 million tons was used, UP said.
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