Brazil Base Oil Output Fell in 2023


Brazil Base Oil Output Fell in 2023

Base oil production in Brazil was down again in December, closing out a year in which output dropped 11% compared to 2022.

The country’s three base oil plants churned out 38,669 metric tons of virgin base oils in the last month of the year. That was the highest monthly total since July but was still 23% lower than the 50,360 that they made during December of 2022. For all of 2023, output was 461,331 tons, down from 517,986 tons the previous year.

The 12-month decline was due to a drop-off at the Duque de Caxias Refinery, known as Reduc, which is responsible for most of domestic base oil output. The base oil plant at Reduc last year produced 380,000 tons of base oil, a 15% decrease from 2022.  Owned by Petrobras, the plant has annual Group I production capacity of 584,000 tons per year.

The Lubnor base oil plant owned by Petrobras in Fortaleza, in the northeastern state of Ceara, produced about 50,000 tons of base oil in 2023, 10% higher. Formally named Refinaria Lubrificantes e Derivados do Nordeste, or Northeastern Lubricants and Derivatives Refinery, its plant has 68,000 t/y annual naphthenic base stocks production capacity.

The base oil plant at Mataripe Refinery in Sao Francisco do Conde produced about 31,000 tons of product last year, a 17% jump from 26,000 tons. Owned by Mubadala Investment Co. and operated by its Acelen subsidiary, the plant has annual Group I production capacity of 91,000 t/y.

Brazil’s monthly base oil production peaked at about 49,000 tons in both May and June. Production topped the 42,000 tons mark in each month from January through July before starting to ebb at 37,770 tons in August.

The low marks occurred in September, at 22,482 tons, and October at 20,683 tons.

Sequentially, December’s total represented an uptick for the year, after being below 29,000 tons each month from September through November.