Russia’s crude oil exports by sea continued to slump last week and are now well below the February levels and nearly 1.5 million barrels per day (bpd) lower than the recent peak at the end of April, tanker-tracking data monitored by Bloomberg showed on Tuesday.
Russia’s crude shipments plunged by 311,000 bpd to 2.73 million bpd in the week to July 23, as exports out of the Western ports on the Baltic Sea and the Black Sea crashed to 1.17 million bpd, down by 625,000 bpd from the previous week, according to the data reported by Bloomberg’s Julian Lee.
Crude shipments from the Kozmino port in Russia’s Far East, from where the voyage to top customers China and India is much shorter, rose in the week to July 23, but couldn’t offset the plummeting crude export volumes from Novorossiysk on the Black Sea and Primorsk and Ust-Luga on the Baltic Sea.
So in the week to July 23, nationwide Russian crude exports by sea, at 2.73 million bpd, were 1.48 million bpd lower than the peak seen in the final week of April, according to Bloomberg’s data.
Tanker-tracking data have already started to show in recent weeks that Russia’s seaborne crude oil exports were declining from the highs seen in April and May.
Last week, Russian crude oil shipments plunged to a six-month low in the four weeks to July 16.
This week’s data compiled by Bloomberg suggests shipments plummeted further in the following week to July 23.
In early July, Russia said that it would cut its crude oil exports by 500,000 bpd in August in a bid to ensure a balanced market, and the reduction in exports would come from a further 500,000-bpd cut in oil production.
Vessel-monitoring data suggest that Russia has started to reduce supply to the market, which, combined with the Saudi production cut of 1 million bpd in July and August, would tighten market balances.
By Tom Kool for Oilprice.com
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