Russia's Crudex Becomes Biggest ULSD Exporter Within Six Months
Russian oil trader Crudex has become the country's biggest exporter of ULSD just six months after it was first seen chartering refined product tankers from the port of Primorsk, from where most of the country's middle distillate is shipped.
The company shipped 30% of the 1.1 million tons seen exported from the Baltic port of Primorsk in April, according to OPIS and port agent data.
Crudex is a Geneva-based company with a representative office in Moscow that has exported Russian refined products for 15 years, according to its website.
However the company wasn't seen in the market until last October and has rapidly established a presence at Primorsk. Crudex shipped 345,000 tons on 13 vessels from Primorsk in April, according to the OPIS Tanker Tracker, which compiles information from traders, brokers and satellite-tracking data. Shell was the second-largest exporter of ULSD, with 206,000 on seven ships, followed by Vitol with 160,000 tons and Gunvor with 132,000 data show.
Since chartering its first vessel on Oct. 27 last year, Crudex has shipped nearly 1.7 million tons on 64 ships, according to the OPIS Tanker Tracker.
Vitol has previously been seen as the largest exporter of ULSD from Primorsk, with a strong presence, especially in the first three months of 2014. But the oil trader, which owns port and storage facilities in the nearby Baltic port of Ventspils, appears to have diverted its shipments to leave from there after a pipeline to the Latvian port switched to supplying 10ppm gasoil over March.
Export volumes from Ventspils couldn't be confirmed as the sulfur grades of gasoil cargoes couldn't be identified.
Primorsk loadings in May are expected to be much the same as April's, with data from the port estimating that 1,234,000 tons will load on 40 vessels.
April liftings show Germany was the biggest destination for Russian ULSD taking just over half, at 582,000 tons, with the U.K. the second-largest, imported 433,000 tons. Some 324,000 tons went to France, data show.