PDVSA to Resume Diluted Crude Oil Exports

Venezuelan state-owned oil company, Petróleos de Venezuela (PDVSA) will begin exporting diluted crude oil (DCO) this week, after it being stopped for nine months. This was revealed in a document to which Reuters had access.

After the agreements reached between PDVSA and Iran, the Venezuelan state-owned company has been able to modify its production and marketing strategies, which has helped it build diluted crude inventories.

An agreement reached in 2021 with the National Iranian Oil Company (NIOC) allowed PDVSA to receive around 2.1 million barrels per month of condensate, while supplying Iran with some 3.8 million barrels of Venezuelan Merey 16 crude.

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It should be noted that since the United States imposed illegal sanctions and the blockade against Venezuela, the acquisition of products, including diluents, has been impossible, which adversely affected PDVSA’s capacity to produce varieties of exportables.

However, now with the accumulation of diluted crude oil (DCO) in PDVSA’s tank farms, the company has decided to resume exports of diluted crude to Asia.

According to the document accessed by Reuters, a supertanker carrying the flag of Panama recently loaded around 1.9 million barrels of DCO from Venezuela bound for Malaysia, where there is a hub frequently used to transport Venezuelan crude to China.

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An analysis of satellite images from the ship monitoring service TankerTrackers.com indicated that the supertanker finished loading last Sunday, January 9, at the PDVSA’s Jose port, Anzoátegui state, in the east of the country, and was awaiting authorization to set sail on Monday, January 10.

PDVSA has not exported DCO since April 2020, when it had dispatched two shipments to Asia; however, now this resumption is expected to facilitate production, crude oil storage, and transportation.

For Venezuela, 2022 is expected to be the year of reactivation of the oil sector. This weekend it came to be known that the refineries increased gasoline production to almost 160 thousand barrels per day, almost doubling the figures of December (82 thousand bpd).


Featured image: PDVSA oil facilities in Venezuela. File photo.

(RedRadioVE) by Ana Perdigón

Translation: Orinoco Tribune


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