Oil imports from the US could lead to a reduction in supplies from the Middle East

MOSCOW, September 5 – PRIME. US oil imports to China are expected to reach a 20-month high in September and may continue to increase in November. Refineries are taking advantage of lower prices as exports from the US rise and strategic reserves are activated.

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According to Refinitiv, at least 14 tankers carrying 1.51 million tons, or 11 million barrels of US oil, will deliver to Chinese ports in September, while imports will total 8.82 million barrels in October. The September figure could be the highest since January 2021, when US oil exports to China reached 1.98 million tons.

Against the background of increased supplies of oil from the United States, the discount between the WTI grade and the Middle East price marker Dubai increased to $10.72 per barrel at the end of August, which is the maximum since March 9, according to Refinitiv data.

US oil imports to China fell to a 27-month low of 128,527 tons, or 938,247 barrels, in July, according to Chinese customs data. The crisis in Ukraine and the recovery of the economy after the pandemic led to an increase in demand in Western countries, as a result of which purchases of American oil turned out to be unprofitable for Chinese refineries.

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Meanwhile, now the supply of American oil to China is increasing, which may lead to a reduction in Middle Eastern oil imports.

Despite the increase in oil supplies from the United States, total oil imports to China in September may continue to decline, analysts say. Oil consumption in China is under pressure amid a zero tolerance policy for COVID.

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