Refinery Fires Slash July Russia Diesel Exports by 28%
Two refinery fires in Russia have slashed July exports of ultra-low-sulfur diesel shipped from Primorsk and other Baltic seaports, falling 28% lower than last month, at 875,000 metric tons, or 6.5 million bbl.
That's the lowest volumes tracked this year.
Fires at Rosneft's Achinsk plant and Surgutneftegas' 140,000-b/d Kirishi refinery appear to have cut or diverted export supplies, with companies affected reducing shipments, according to the OPIS Tanker Tracker on FleetMon.com.
Some 31 tankers loaded ULSD from Baltic seaports, including 762,000 tons from Primorsk, according to data from agents, traders and satellite-tracking data compiled by OPIS.
Rosneft was seen exporting one shipment in July, with 40,000 tons sold to Vitol and loaded on the Nord Strong, compared to 114,000 tons loaded from the port in the prior month, data shows.
Surgutneftegas sold three shipments totaling 82,000 tons in July, far lower than the 259,000 tons seen exported in June. All shipments from the refiner are loaded on vessels chartered by International Petroleum Products, the company usually seen lifting the ULSD from the refiner, normally from Primorsk.
Volumes of ULSD to Europe shipped from Russia have surged by an estimated 35% in the first half of 2014 to displace India as the region's second-largest supplier of the transport fuel.
Russia exported around 7.6 million metric tons to Europe between January and June 30 this year, according to data compiled by OPIS from European Commission trade data and satellite-tracking of vessels.
ULSD shipments from the federation are hitting records as upgraded refineries boost supply of export-quality fuels, with pipeline capacity limits previously seen as the only constraints on exports.
Diesel supply is estimated to be 2.1 million b/d in Russia in June, July and August, despite the Achinsk refinery, which is likely to be shut until November, London-based energy consultancy Energy Aspects said in a report this month.
ULSD, defined as gasoil with less than 0.001% sulfur content, imported to Europe from Russia in 2013 grew to 9.6 million tons, or just over 196,000 b/d, from 6 million tons a year earlier, Eurostat figures show.
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