South Korea crude oil imports are predicted to have topped 120 million barrels in 2021, and the nation is likely to be the top Asian crude consumer in 2022, as local refiners choose North American feedstocks owing to OPEC supply uncertainty and low procurement costs.
The ideal moment to sign up is right now. The country’s major refiners received 11.6 ML barrels of the United States oil in November, increasing 76.6% from the previous year and 16.8% from the month of October, as per the estimates.According to the KNOC statistics, South Korea got 113 million barrels from the US between January and November, putting it second behind Saudi Arabia on the list of its major suppliers for the time.
According to South Korea refiners, they have virtually finished their first half of 2022 term supply conversations with key Middle Eastern suppliers, but they have left a lot of opportunities for spot purchase, particularly from the United States and South America.According to refinery sources, refiners are usually pursuing a trading approach to reduce term transactions while allowing greater room for flexible spot buying in 2022, taking into account the uncertain supply-demand dynamics during the pandemic.
“When asked about minimum and maximum term supply volumes they could offer, the major Middle Eastern producers couldn’t give us a straight answer because OPEC members are also struggling to assess the global demand recovery outlook and their own production hike strategy for 2022,” said a feedstock trading strategist at a major South Korea refiner.