Europe, Middle East and Africa base oil markets are still being buffeted by the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Although some countries have initiated varying versions of a back-to-work culture, things are far from what they were prior to the lockdown periods.
Base oil prices have come under enormous pressure from the build-up in inventories, and the opportunity to clear these high inventories is basically missing. The high stock situation has been caused by a number of factors, not least of which was the tendency for blenders to build inventories prior to spring and summer when demand typically rises. Also there has been a spell where buyers recognized that prices were coming down, hence they seized the opportunity to buy in material which is still in storage, awaiting demand for finished lubricants to pick up.