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22 Mar, 2023 08:34

No signs of Russian oil production cut – Bloomberg

Moscow had planned to reduce output by 500,000 barrels per day in March
No signs of Russian oil production cut – Bloomberg

Shipments of Russian seaborne crude declined last week but there is no substantial evidence that Moscow is implementing a 500,000-barrels-a-day output cut scheduled for March, Bloomberg reported on Tuesday.

Volumes of oil destined for China, India, and Türkiye – nations that have not joined Western sanctions – and cargoes that have not yet confirmed their endpoint slumped by 90,000 barrels a day (bpd) to 3.23 million in the seven days to March 17.

A total of 30 tankers were loaded with 22.6 million barrels of Russian crude in the same period, the outlet reported, citing ship-tracking data. This volume represents a decline of 640,000 barrels or 3% from the previous week.

Even with reduced shipments, however, there’s little sign that Russia has slashed oil production, the outlet reported, noting that the country’s storage tanks have topped 15 million barrels for the first time since last April.

Volumes of exports to Asia, along with cargoes showing no final destination, remained almost unchanged and totaled 3.18 million bpd in the period to March 17. Observations show that most of the cargoes currently identified as ‘Unknown Asia’ and heading to the Suez Canal will end up in India or China, the outlet reported.

The ‘Other Unknown’ cargoes, which comprised 356,000 bpd in the four weeks to March 17, are loaded on tankers said to be headed for the Spanish North African city of Ceuta, the Greek port of Kalamata, or no destination at all. Most of these shipments may reportedly arrive in Türkiye.

Meanwhile, ship-to-ship transfers of Russian crude in the Mediterranean have surged with at least 52 cargoes transferred between tankers off the coast of Ceuta and off the Greek coast near Kalamata, tracking data showed.

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