Writing in the Shipping Intelligence Weekly, Clarkson Research Services (CRS) analyst Calum Kennedy noted that US oil products exports have risen from 1.3M barrels per day (bpd) in 2008 to 3.4M bpd in 2018.
This growth has been overshadowed by headlines concerned with US shale oil exports, but as the graphic shows, the increase in oil products exports has been equally dramatic.
US crude oil exports commenced in late 2015, and have now reached 1.8M bpd in 2018, with growth to Asia increasing by 108% despite the self-imposed moratorium on US crude oil imports by China.
The driving force is the increase in shale oil production, which CRS reports has grown by a compound annual growth rate of 11% in the 10 years to the end of 2018.
The loser has been the relatively short-haul tanker trade between West Africa and the US in lighter grades of crude oil: a trade that has collapsed by 82% in the same period.
As the graphic shows, the result is that the US is now a net exporter of energy and one of the main feeders of tonne-mile demand for the crude oil and product tanker fleets.
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