U.S. poised to become net exporter of crude oil in 2023

HOUSTON, Dec 19 (Reuters) – The United States has become the world’s largest oil exporter over the past few years, but exports have not surpassed those imported since World War II. This may change next year.

U.S. crude exports are now 3.4 million barrels per day (bpd), of which about 3 million bpd are exported for refined products such as gasoline and diesel. The United States is also the leading exporter of natural gas (LNG), with growth expected to increase in the coming years.

But the United States consumes 20 million barrels of crude per day, the most in the world, and its output has not exceeded 13 million bpd. Until recently, the idea that it could be anything but a big predatory lender was ridiculous.

Last month, US government data showed that US oil supplies fell to 1.1 million barrels per day (bpd), the lowest since record keeping began in 2001. barrels per day.

Things that have changed the equation this year include sanctions that are crippling Russia’s oil and natural gas sales after its invasion of Ukraine, and Washington’s large-scale release of oil from emergency storage to combat rising oil prices.

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“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has fueled a new demand for US energy and should push oil exports to other countries late next year on the assumption that shale output is increasing,” said Rohit Rathod, an energy analyst at Vortexa.

To become an exporter, the United States needs to increase production or decrease consumption. US petroleum demand is expected to rise 0.7% to 20.51 million bpd next year, so that means production should rise.

The United States already produces more oil than any other country in the world including Saudi Arabia and Russia. US shale fields are aging and production growth this year has been sluggish. Total output should reach 12.34 million bpd next year – but only if prices are profitable enough to encourage drillers to pump more.

European refiners have acquired US grades to offset the loss of Russian oil, and with deep US discounts to global prices, Asian refiners have increased purchases to 1.75 million barrels per day, data analysis firm Kpler said.

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Terminal operators are scrambling to improve their ability to efficiently handle large tankers that can hold more than 2 million barrels of oil.

“Russia has proven to be unreliable,” said Sean Strawbridge, head of the largest US oil terminal, the Port of Corpus Christi. “This creates a great opportunity for American manufacturers and American energy.”

Corpus Christi could see an increase of 100,000 bpd in exports next year, Strawbridge said, on top of shipments of 2.2 million bpd in October.

Analysts say exports could suffer if many countries around the world collapse, curbing demand, and if the easing of sanctions on Venezuela’s crude oil boosts the country’s exports.

Reuters photos

LNG HITS RECORD

The United States became the world’s largest exporter of natural gas in the first half of 2022, surpassing Qatar and Australia, thanks to European demand and rising prices.

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LNG exports will likely continue to rise through 2023 as Europe struggles to fill storage this winter, said Matt Smith, an analyst at Kpler.

Refinery exports have declined due to plant closures and reduced consumer demand. The US exported 3.1 million bpd of oil through September this year, the EIA showed, down from 3.2 million bpd in the same period in 2019.

The exception was diesel, where exports rose to a three-year high in July of 1.3 million bpd, Kpler data showed. Europe’s looming ban on Russian oil has pushed diesel to reach Europe by about 330,000 bpd in the first 15 days of December, more than five times its monthly volume so far this year.

Reuters photos

(This article has been corrected to correct verse 12 to say that the history of Corpus Christi was in October, not the third chapter)

Reporting by Arathy Somasekhar in Houston, additional reporting by Laura Sanicola; edited by Gary McWilliams and David Gregorio

Our Standards: Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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