U.S. Base Oil Exports, Imports Fall


U.S. Base Oil Exports, Imports Fall
A view of an oil products transport tanker. © Avigator Fortuner

The United States’ exports of base oil experienced a 41% year-to-year plunge in August – to the lowest volume since May 2020 – while imports of base oil fell 29%, according to data released by a U.S. government agency.

The import volume was the second highest this year, slightly behind July’s figure.

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The U.S. exported 2.2 million barrels of base oil in August – the lowest since 1.8 million barrels in May 2020 – the U.S. Energy Information Administration reported. In August of 2021 the number was 3.7 million barrels. Sequentially, August’s exports were down 43% from 3.9 million barrels in July.

Exports to Mexico declined 46% to 660,000 barrels in August, compared to 1.2 million barrels in the same period of last year. Sequentially, August’s export total was up 1% from 652,000 barrels in July.

Base oil exports to Canada decreased 19% to 287,000 barrels in August and were down sequentially by 11% from 320,000 barrels in July.

Exports to Brazil underwent a year-to-year decrease of 3% in August to 278,000 barrels. Volume exported to Belgium slipped 66% year to year to 172,000 barrels, while shipments to Chile dropped 41% to 58,000 barrels.

The U.S. shipped  110,000 tons of base oil to Chile in August, down 10% year to year. Elsewhere in South America, exports to Columbia decreased 10% to 110,000 barrels in August, and sequentially dropped 88% from 926,000 barrels in July. Exports to the country had surged past the 900,000 barrels mark in both July and August, but more typically don’t rise much higher than the 140,000-barrels range in a month. U.S. base oil exports to Ecuador rose 160% year on year to 100,000 barrels and sequentially by 41% from 71,000 barrels in July.

Exports to India fell 85% to 46,000 barrels in August, compared to 299,000 barrels. Sequentially, August’s total was a 360% jump from 10,000 barrels in July.

Base oil imported into the U.S. totaled 1.7 million barrels in August, a 29% drop from 2.4 million barrels, but a 117% increase from 789,000 barrels imported in August 2020. Sequentially, August’s total was down 1% from July.

Base oil imports from Qatar fell 25% to 431,000 barrels in August, but sequentially were up 4% from 413,000 barrels in July.

Imports of base oil from South Korea declined 15% to 364,000 barrels, which was also down 10% from 403,000 barrels in July.

Imports from Canada were up 7% at 302,000 barrels in August, and that was up 17% from 259,000 barrels in July.

Imports from the United Arab Emirates were up 10% at 257,000 barrels, which was down 10% sequentially from 287,000 barrels in July.

Base oil imported from Indonesia decreased 3% to 194,000 barrels in August but were up 15% from 169,000 barrels in July.

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