Brazil Base Oil Output Still Down

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Brazil Base Oil Output Still Down
© Sergey Ogaryov

Brazil’s base oil production declined almost 20% in January, while its base oil import volumes surged to more than 130% higher than in the same month in 2020, according to recently updated government data.

The South American country’s output – primarily API Group I oils – fell by 18% to 44,000 metric tons in January, down from 54,000 tons in the same month in 2020, according to data released by the National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels, ANP.

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Base oil plant production in Brazil declined 18% in 2020 to 485,000 tons in 2020. For the final quarter of last year, production was generally in the range of 40,000-45,000 tons per month, which was around 15%-25% less than the corresponding months in 2019.

The country imported 82,000 tons of base oil in January, 134% higher than 35,000 metric tons in the year-earlier period. January 2020 had the second lowest monthly base oil import volume for Brazil last year. Most of the base oil that Brazil imports comes from the United States, and most of that is API Group II. Base oil imports were up for 2020, with the largest spikes in volumes occurring in the second quarter and late last year.

Before the COVID-19 pandemic struck, Brazil imported volumes of base oil similar to what it produced, but while domestic output dropped during 2020, imports rose.

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