Saudis Deny Claim That Crude Export to US Rose Last Month
EghtesadOnline: A Saudi Arabian oil official on Saturday refuted the conclusion of an analytics firm that the country’s oil exports to the US dramatically increased in the last month.
TankerTrackers.com said on Thursday that Saudi Arabian oil exports to the US more than doubled from February to March as oil prices crashed. The firm said its data indicates that the April export figure is on track to surpass March’s number, Financial Tribune reported.
An unnamed Saudi oil official who is familiar with the matter denied both conclusions. The official told CNBC that Saudi Arabia’s April allocation for the United States is targeted at around 600,000 barrels per day, a figure which the official said is not a significant increase over the first-quarter monthly average.
TankerTrackers, which uses satellite tracking of VLCCs — the vessels that transport crude — says that Saudi crude shipments to American ports went from an average of 366,000 bpd in February to 829,540 bpd in March — a multiple of 2.27.
The website said that satellite tracking indicates 1.46 million barrels per day of Saudi oil shipped to the US in the first two weeks of April — a figure that would mark four times February’s daily volume and the highest figure since 2014.
According to Saudi state oil producer Aramco’s website, the company was loading 15 tankers for its international customers on April 1 — the day a previous OPEC production cut agreement with its oil-producing allies, OPEC+, expired — supplying the tankers with a record 18.8 million barrels in a single day.