The Continued import of crude oil to the US
Hellenic Shipping News reports that US crude oil imports continue. In its latest weekly report, ship broker Banchero Costa said that “driven by the shale oil boom of the last decade, the United States have rapidly increased both the production and the export of crude oil and oil products.”
Overall, crude oil imports have been declining in recent years, and this trend is expected to continue. In contrast, its exports from the United States have increased. Crude oil exports reached 129.5 mln tonnes in 2019, an increase of 48.6% compared to 2018, based on Refinitiv ship tracking data.
“At the same time, total seaborne imports of crude oil into the USA (excluding domestic cabotage) amounted to 169.0 mln tonnes. This was -25.7% down from 227.6 mln tonnes in 2018,” Banchero Costa concluded. He also believes that the corona has affected the US economy. Its effect on freight forwarding has been significant. In the first 7 months of 2020, the United States imported 82.2 mln tonnes of crude oil, a decrease of 21.8% over last year, he notes.
According to him, we find that huge amounts of US crude are supplied through the Middle East and Saudi Arabia. Shipping from Saudi Arabia to the United States increased by 26% in January-July 2020, reaching 18 mln tones. However, this amount is much less than in 2018 and 28.3 mln tonnes in 2017. In Iraq, however, the situation is different. During the same period, the exports fell by 45% compared to 2018 and it reaches 5.5 mln tonnes. In this regard, in Kuwait, exports to the United States have fallen sharply.
Outside the Middle East, the United States supplies some of its crude oil from Mexico. In this regard, Mexican exports increased by 10.9% compared to last year. Also Another part of this demand came from South America, which was 13.7 mln tonnes and decreased by 38.8%. for more detail, check the source.
Thus, all of these statistics clearly show US dependence on other countries’ crude oil. Even with rising US crude oil production, the idea of zero net imports is unlikely.