Crude oil exports in the US increased in the first half of 2020 compared to the same period of 2019, after a record-high increase in February 2020, according to the country's Energy Information Administration (EIA) on Wednesday.
US crude oil exports reached record high levels of 3.7 million barrels per day (mb/d) in February this year, and declined by 151,000 barrels per day in March to 3.6 mb/d and then by a record 480,000 barrels per day to 3.1 million b/d in April, the EIA data showed.
In May, exports continued to decline, first falling to 2.9 mb/d, or 30,000 barrels per day lower than the May 2019 level, and then to 2.8 mb/d in June -347,000 barrels per day lower than the June 2019 level, according to the agency.
However, despite the recent declines, US crude oil exports averaged 3.2 mb/d in the first half of 2020, up from 2.9 mb/d in the first half of 2019, the EIA data showed.
- Imports in first half of 2020 much lower than 2019 levels
US crude oil imports in the first half of 2020 were much lower than levels seen during the same period of 2019, the EIA said.
The US imported an average of 6.2 mb/d of crude oil in the first half of 2020, down 855,000 barrels per day, or 12%, compared with the first half of 2019, according to the data.
However, the agency said monthly imports declined sharply in April before increasing in May and June.
The decline in trade volume, from falling exports since March and import declines in April, came in response to the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, which reduced petroleum demand, the EIA highlighted.
By Firdevs Yuksel and Sibel Morrow