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Record Oil Output Does Not End US Import Dependence

Record Oil Output Does Not End US Import DependenceRecord Oil Output Does Not End US Import Dependence

In the first week of July, US net imports of petroleum products fell to just 1.67 million barrels per day, the lowest weekly total on record in at least three decades.

The decline of net imports comes as the US has ramped up oil production in the last few years, which affects the net import figure in two ways.

A steady increase in exports also pushes down the net import figure, Oil Price reported.

Crude oil exports hit a high of 3 million bpd in the third week of June.

However, the net import figure has been falling for years and a large part of that is the fact that the US has been scaling up exports of refined products, including gasoline, distillate fuel oil and propane, among others. This trend dates back longer than the recent rally in crude exports.

In 2005, weekly net imports peaked, routinely topping 13 million bbd. This figure has currently plunged to less than 2 million bpd.

While the US may not need oil and refined product imports as in the past, but the US is still completely enmeshed with the global market. In fact, as output of oil and refined products dramatically increased over the past few years, the volume of trade also rose sharply.

“Far from reducing interaction with the world, higher [light oil] output has contributed to increased traffic as US refiners seek to diversify their crude slate and producers look for new markets,” the IEA wrote in its latest Oil Market Report.

When adding imports and exports, the total US trade in petroleum products hit 10.8 million bpd in June, the highest monthly total since 2005, dating back to when the US import dependence peaked.

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