A big player in the oil industry
Russia is home to some of the world’s largest reserves of oil and gas, and these natural resources have been a major source of wealth for the country. Russia’s oil and gas reserves account for around 20% of the world’s total, and the country is the largest exporter of oil and gas in the world.
Russia’s oil and gas exports account for around 70% of the country’s total exports, and these exports play a vital role in supporting the Russian economy. Russia’s oil and gas reserves have helped to make the country one of the world’s leading energy producers. This has helped to finance the country’s industrialisation and modernisation and also played a major role in the development of the country’s infrastructure.
Seaborne oil exports decline since Ukraine war
As Moscow’s crude shipments to the EU start to decline ahead of impending sanctions and a boom in the purchase by Indian refiners looks to fade, tanker monitoring data show that Russia’s seaborne oil exports dropped 6% to a record post-Ukraine conflict low in the first half of September.
Over the period of September 1–15, shipped exports of Russian crude decreased by 314,000 b/d put together with August levels to average 3.03 million b/d, the lowest level since September 2021 and the first time they have fallen below pre-war levels. The data reveals that for the third straight month, Russia’s exports of oil products were robust, just marginally declining to 2.47 million b/d.
Combined total Russian oil exports from the country, excluding its part of CPC flows from the Black Sea, averaged 5.50 million b/d in the time. This is also the lowest level since September of last year, when the world’s oil consumption was recovering from the COVID-19 epidemic.
According to the most current statistics, the recent spike in Russian oil shipments to India may have stalled. Crude flows to the major Asian consumer fell 40% from August levels in the past two weeks to 452,000 b/d, the lowest level since exports soared to an all-time high of almost 1 million b/d in July. As a result of its refiners snatching up cheap Urals crude spurned by others in the aftermath of the invasion of Ukraine by Moscow, India overtook China as Russia’s number two oil client.
Russian crudes used to be cheaper, but recently those discounts have shrunk, making them less desirable than crudes from other countries. Since peaking in July, the European market’s discount for Urals to Dated Brent has decreased by half, to about $20/b.
According to sources in the industry, recent reductions for Urals crude entering China haven’t been enough to pay for the logistical, financial, and insurance expenses incurred by refiners. Moreover, spot cargoes of Russia’s ESPO (Eastern Siberia Pacific Ocean) oil have also been sold at a discount of just 50 cents/b to front-month Intercontinental Exchange Brent crude futures on a DES (delivered ex-ship) Shandong basis, in line with comparable sour and sweet crude grades that Asian refiners purchase from the Middle East and the Americas.
Early in September, the statistics showed that China, the largest oil consumer in the world, continued to import Russian crude at a steady rate of about 860,000 b/d. Additionally, Turkish refiners have kept up their purchases of Russian crude, which during that time period reached a record flow of 580,000 b/d, more than twice pre-war levels.
Now, Russia’s oil exports have reached a new low since the Ukraine war, and this could have major implications for the country. Additionally, it could lead to a decrease in the value of the Russian ruble, and an increase in inflation.
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