Marine Link
Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Crude Oil News

BIMCO: China Breaks New Ground… Again

© Igor Groshev / Adobe Stock

Chinese seaborne imports of iron ore, coal and crude oil have all grown strongly throughout 2017. Both seaborne imports of crude oil and iron ore have reached the highest levels ever recorded, while coal reached the highest level in three years. Imports of crude oil and coal have benefitted the shipping industry to the greatest extent as both volumes and distances have increased. China continues to ramp up its imports of iron ore with seaborne imports growing 4.7% in 2017 compared to 2016.

China Surpasses US as Largest Crude Oil Importer

Graph Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, Petroleum Supply Monthly and Weekly Petroleum Status Report, China General Administration of Customs, based on Bloomberg, L.P.

China took the crown as the world’s largest crude oil importer in 2017, according to U.S. Energy Information Administration press release. China imported 8.4 million barrels per day, and the United States imported 7.9 million barrels per day. China had become the world’s largest net importer (imports minus exports) of total petroleum and other liquid fuels in 2013. New refinery capacity and strategic inventory stockpiling combined with declining domestic oil production were the major factors contributing to the recent increase in China’s crude oil imports.

LOOP Tests Crude Exports with VLCC

The Louisiana Offshore Oil Port (LOOP), the largest privately owned crude terminal in the United States, said on Tuesday it had moored a supertanker and initiated a detailed test procedure, bringing it closer to being able to export crude oil. LOOP said last year its U.S. Gulf Coast facility would have the capacity to load Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCCs), the largest oil tankers, which can ship some 2 million barrels of oil by early 2018. Washington lifted a 40-year ban on oil exports two years ago, and since then tankers filled with U.S. crude have landed in more than 30 countries, ranging from massive economies like China and India to tiny Togo. Gulf Coast terminals handle three-quarters of U.S. crude exports, but only LOOP can handle supertankers.

Hyundai Merchant Marine, GS Caltex Ink Crude Oil Deal

Photo: Hyundai Merchant Marine

South Korean shipping company Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) has signed a long-term crude oil shipping contract with compatriot oil refiner GS Caltex. A press release from HMM said that the KRW190 billion (USD 180 million) contract will involve the transportation of 19 million tonnes of crude oil from Saudi Arabia and the Gulf from July 2019 to August 2024. Accordingly, HMM plans to deploy two 300,000 dwt Very Large Crude Carriers (VLCC) which were previously ordered last September. C.K. Meanwhile, HMM has continued its partnership with GS Caltex over 20 years in crude oil shipping business.

Nigeria's Primary Crude Exports Set to Rise

File Image: A typical VLCC underway, full and down (CREDIT: EuroNav)

Nigeria is set to export more of its largest crude oil stream, Qua Iboe, on a barrel-per-day basis in April, while loadings of two other main export grades will also rise, loading programmes showed on Friday. Forcados exports will also rise, to 262,000 bpd in April on 10 cargoes, up from 248,000 bpd on 11 cargoes in March. Bonny Light exports in April are also expected to edge higher on a bpd basis to 163,000 bpd in April, up from 161,000 bpd in March. The total Bonny loading volume will slip to 4.9 million barrels on five cargoes…

Oil Shipments From Georgia's Batumi Port Down 34%

© kaetana / Adobe Stock

Oil and related shipments from Georgia's Black Sea port of Batumi in January were down 34 percent from a year earlier, an official at the terminal, operated by Kazakh KazMunaiGas , said on Thursday. The official gave no reason for the fall, but state company KazMunaiGas continued to reroute some shipments to the Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline this year. January shipments of crude oil and refined oil products from Batumi totalled 108,464 million tonnes, down from 164,218 tonnes a year earlier and 221,210 tonnes in December, said the official, who asked not to be identified.

Anadarko Posts Quarterly Profit on Higher Crude Prices

(Photo: Anadarko)

Anadarko Petroleum Corp on Tuesday beat analysts' estimate for quarterly profit, helped by improved crude oil prices and lower costs. Crude prices are recovering from the lows hit in 2016 after a global crude oil glut. The company cut its 2018 capital investment outlook to a range of$4.1 billion to $4.5 billion, from $4.2 billion to $4.6 billion it previously forecast. Total full-year sales volume outlook was cut to a range of 238-248 million barrels of oil equivalent (MMBOE) from 245-255 MMBOE.

Bahri Adds VLCC 'Lawhah' to its Fleet

Lawhah lifts industry leader’s growing multipurpose fleet to 90. Photo:  Bahri

The National Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia (Bahri) received a very large crude carrier (VLCC) named “Lawhah” on Thursday, the company said. "Continuing its strong start to 2018, Bahri accepted the delivery of ‘Lawhah to further cement its market-dominant position in crude oil transportation," said a press release. The vessel, which lifts the total number of the company’s multipurpose fleet to 90, is the second of five VLCCs to be received this year from Hyundai Samho Heavy Industries (HSHI), the world’s largest shipbuilding company based in South Korea.

Rare Suezmax Gasoline Cargo Sails to West Africa

Nigeria's push to keep its citizens stocked with fuel is drawing close to a million tonnes a month of gasoline from Europe - including now on a rare Suezmax vessel booked by Vitol. The country is working overtime to replenish its tanks after shortages and queues popped up across the nation of more than 180 million in early December - sparking a scramble for state oil company NNPC. The restocking comes as gasoline demand in other regions was waning in winter, and has helped boost fuel and refining margins in Europe just as the continent's refineries prepare to shut for seasonal maintenance. The Vitol-booked, 115,000-tonne cargo aboard the newly built Sea Icon is sailing to West Africa from the Latvian port of Ventspils, according to Reuters ship tracking and trading sources.

Kirby Closes Acquisition of Higman Marine

File Image (CREDIT: Higman Marine)

Kirby Corporation has announced the completion of the acquisition of Higman Marine, Inc. and its affiliated companies (“Higman”), an operator of tank barges and towboats participating in the inland tank barge transportation industry in the United States. The total value of the transaction was approximately $419 million in cash before post-closing adjustments and transaction fees. issuance of senior notes, which closed on February 12, 2018. The new senior notes provided for $500 million in fixed rate debt at 4.2% with a 10-year maturity on March 1, 2028.

Singapore Marine Fuel Sales Surge 7.2%

© Kalyakan/Adobe Stock

Singapore's marine fuel sales set a monthly record in January after climbing to 4.606 million tonnes, up 3.2 percent from a year earlier as vessels coming to the world's largest bunkering hub loaded larger amounts of bunker fuel per vessel on average, official data showed. Compared with the previous month, sales in January were up 7.2 percent, data from the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) showed. The number of vessels that called at Singapore for bunkers fell by 4.4 percent from last year to 3,472 but was at an eight-month high, MPA data showed.

Texas Flood: U.S. Oil Pours into Global Markets

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / (c) Jose Gill)

United States taking share from OPEC nations in Asia, Europe, as China’s biggest U.S. crude buyer to double imports. In the two years since Washington lifted a 40-year ban on oil exports, tankers filled with U.S. crude have landed in more than 30 countries, ranging from massive economies like China and India to tiny Togo. The repeal has unleashed a flood of U.S. shale oil, undercutting global crude prices, eroding the clout of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) and seizing market share from many of its member countries.

U.S. Crude Oil Production October Exceeded Imports Reports EIA

Diesel chart courtesy of EIA

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) releases latest short-term energy outlook. Monthly estimated domestic crude oil production exceeded crude oil imports in October 2013 for the first time since February 1995. The weekly U.S. average regular gasoline retail price has fallen by more than 40 cents per gallon since the beginning of September. EIA's forecast for the regular gasoline retail price averages $3.24 per gallon in the fourth quarter of 2013, $0.10 per gallon less than forecast in last month's STEO.

Bill Aims to Lift Ban on Texas Energy Exports

Congressman Michael McCaul introduced H.R. 4349, the Crude Oil Export Act, which lifts the 1970s era prohibition on the export of American crude oil and would remove the major remaining barrier that keeps the U.S. from being competitive with other oil exporting nations. McCaul said, "Most of America's crude oil production is taking place underneath the feet of Texans in the Eagle Ford Shale and the Permian Basin. According to McCaul, the Crude Oil Export Act will repeal the 1970s era ban on crude oil exports; maintain a ban on crude oil exports to any country that is subject to U.S. trade restrictions, sanctions or that the President or Congress has designated as subject to exclusion for national security reasons…

Small Spill After Tankers Collide Off Louisiana

The U.S. Coast Guard said that shipping operations at the Southwest Pass, off Louisiana, were not affected by a minor crude oil spill after two crude oil tankers collided on Wednesday evening. "The Coast Guard has established a safety zone around the incident area. Normal shipping operations will continue outside the safety zone," said the Coast Guard Marine Safety Office in Morgan City, La. The spill which took place approximately 40 miles south of Grand Isle, La., was not near the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port (LOOP) as earlier reported, said Mark Bugg, scheduling manager for the LOOP, the only deep-water U.S. oil port and a major conduit for the country's crude oil imports.

U.S. Oil Imports Up

U.S. crude oil imports January to June 2001 were above the 2000 level in each month. However, crude oil imports during 3rd quarter were below the 2000-year level for each month. Crude oil imports in August 2001 were about 1.0 mbd below the August 2000 level and the September 2001 level was 0.3 mbd below that of September 2000. Crude oil imports Jan-Sept. 2001 were record high, 0.10 mbd above the Jan-Sep. 2000 level. The highest U.S crude oil imports ever - 9.484 mbd - were recorded in August 2000. U.S. product imports declined dramatically from 3.33 mbd in January 2001 to 2.12 mbd in August, increasing slightly to 2.24 mbd in September 2001. Products imports Jan-Sept. 2001 were also record high, 0.21 mbd above the Jan-Sep. 2000 level. (Source: INTERTANKO News)

JNPT Liquid Cargo Terminal Handles Highest Crude Oil

Photo: Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust

Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT), India’s number one container port, created a major record on November 16, 2016, by loading 80,640 MT of ONGC crude oil on a large vessel ‘MT Desh Bhakta’, which was berthed at LB-01 of BPCL-run Liquid Cargo Terminal. This is the highest quantity of crude oil loaded on a vessel at JNPT which has surpassed the previous highest of 80,489 MT loaded on Tanker vessel ‘MT Ratna Urvi’ in June 2012. ONGC’s crude oil tanker MT Desh Bhakta, which measures LoA of 244.2 meters…

Not All Contangos are Created Equal

After the collapse of the global financial system in 2008, crude oil forward curves moved into steep contango. Fortunes were made in storage asset plays in 2009-2010, which is likely the reason that so much attention is being devoted to the topic today; however, the contango is inherently different today than it was after The Great Recession. As the U.S. energy revolution continues to develop, global crude oil supply and demand dynamics have begun to evolve. Improvements to hydraulic fracturing processes have helped the U.S. become the world’s largest crude oil producer.

Brazil: Exports to Exceed Imports in 2014

Brazil will export more crude oil in 2014 than it will import, Magda Chambriard, director general of Brazil's oil regulator, the ANP, said on Tuesday. If her prediction comes true, the oil-trade surplus will be Brazil's first since 2012, when the country exported $20.3 billion of crude oil and imported $13.4 billion, according to Brazil's commerce and trade ministry. Brazil had an oil trade deficit in 2013, importing $16.3 billion of crude oil and exporting $13 billion, the ministry said on its website. As most of Brazil's oil output is heavy crude oil and its refineries operate best with light crude, Brazil exports domestic oil to buy lighter, imported grades.

Daewoo Gets $740m in Contracts for Two Vessels

Reuters reported that Daewoo Shipbuilding and Marine Engineering Co. had secured a combined $740m order to build a drill ship and a crude oil carrier. The two vessel orders underlined booming oil exploration around the world, Daewoo said in a statement, as crude oil futures have set a series of recent records. The shipbuilder will deliver the drill ship for $623.8m to an unidentified shipping firm from the Oceania Continent, while the crude oil carrier will go to a Europe-based shipper by the end of 2010.

Nansha Factory Cuts First Steel for Tanker Newbuilds

Construction begins on two 113,000 DWT product/crude oil tankers in Nansha Factory   A steel cutting ceremony was held at the Nansha Factory December 1 for the third and fourth of eight vessels of 113,000 DWT product/crude oil tankers for NAVIG8 Group registered in U.K.   Personnel from the builder’s business and operations management departments attended the opening ceremony, as well as signed the progress documents representing GSI with shipowners’ representative.   GSI signed eight shipbuilding contracts with NAVIG8 Group for building 113,000dwt product/crude oil tankers in August, 2013., and construction on the first and second vessels began in June, 2014.   chinagsi.com  

Nippon Oil Starts Commercial Production

Nippon Oil Corp. has started commercial production of crude oil at a reservoir in the North Sea. Maximum daily oil production at the Blane field, located some 260 kilometers east of Scotland's Aberdeen, is estimated at 17,000 barrels. MOC Exploration (U.K.) Ltd., a fifty-fifty joint venture between Nippon Oil and the Japanese government, holds a 14.0 pct stake in the concession, which accounts for daily production of 2,380 barrels of crude oil. Nippon Oil plans to transport the crude oil from the field to the Scottish mainland via a pipeline, and then sell it on to European users, it said. The Blane field produces light crude oil, suitable for processing into gasoline and gas oil.

Angola Crude Exports Set to Rise in January

Angola is set to export 1.77 million barrels per day of crude oil in January, up from 1.60 mln bpd in December, a provisional shipping list showed on Tuesday. The oil from the OPEC member, and Africa's second largest exporter, will be shipped on 57 vessels, the shipping list showed. Exports of Cabinda, Girassol, Palanca, Saturno, Hungo, and Plutonio were set to be higher in January than December, while Dalia exports were lower. Stronger supply of West African crude oil will put further pressure on crude oil futures prices at a time of ample global supply and fragile demand growth. Traders are awaiting Nigerian crude oil exports lists for January, expected to start emerging this week.

Maritime Reporter Magazine Cover Feb 2018 - Cruise Ship Annual

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