The Biden administration’s leading international energy adviser has called on India not to go “too far” as it increases imports of discounted Russian crude that has lost buyers in Europe.

Indian purchases of seaborne Russian oil have surged as exporters slash prices for Urals, the country’s main crude export stream after European refineries began shunning the cargoes and the EU moved to end its dependence on Russian energy following Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.

The deals are causing frustration in western countries, which are paying higher prices for oil in part due to efforts to restrict Russian export revenue that is being used to wage war.

Amos Hochstein, the US state department’s senior energy security adviser, said he had urged India not to profit from the discounted Russian oil while western consumers pay record fuel prices.

“I’ve said, ‘Look, we don’t have secondary sanctions that can ban your purchases from Russia’,” Hochstein told a Senate committee hearing on Thursday.

“I would ask two things: ‘One, don’t go too far. Don’t look like you’re taking advantage of the pain that is being felt in European households and the United States. Second, make sure you negotiate well, because if you don’t buy [the oil], nobody else is.”‘

Exports of Urals have sold in recent weeks for almost $30 a barrel less than Brent crude, the international benchmark. India’s Russian oil imports are soaring…