PDVSA says it will be able to export 1.05 million b/d of crude by March
Venezuela’s state-owned PDVSA will have available by March 370,000 b/d of crude, or 35.2% of crude available for export, that has been left without a market because US sanctions against PDVSA that prevent it from accessing to the US market, according to a technical report seen by S&P Global Platts.
PDVSA has estimated an export volume of 1.050 million b/d in March, according to the technical report, which will be available by “tenders in the international market and direct negotiations,” according to a PDVSA official source, who spoke on condition of anonymity.
PDVSA has estimated an export volume of 1.050 million b/d in March, according to the technical report.
PDVSA will have available the following volumes that were originally being sold to US companies:
• 249,000 b/d of Merey 16 crude, originally destined for Citgo
• 63,000 b/d of Morichal crude, originally destined for Valero
• 32,000 b/d of Boscan crude, originally destined for Chevron
• 13,000 b/d of Pedernales crude, originally destined for Citgo
• 10,000 b/d of Petro Zuata Hevy crude oil, originally destined for Valero
• 1,000 b/d of Anaco Wax crude, originally destined for storage to pay loans to The Japan Bank for International Cooperation.
According to the report, to reduce the impact of US sanctions, PDVSA will decrease the production of diluted crude oil because of a lack of naphtha to dilute.
DCO is an extra heavy crude from the Orinoco Belt upgrader with naphtha.
The availability of DCO for March will be only 90,000 b/d, a drop of 91,000 b/d from the level available for export before the sanctions that was 270,000 b/d, whose main buyers were Citgo and Rosneft. The US sanctions affected the supply of naphtha to PDVSA from Citgo.
PDVSA also will increase the production of Merey 16 crude, which is a blend of extra-heavy crude from the Orinoco Belt with light crude.
The Venezuelan company is planning production of 740,000 b/d of Merey 16 crude for March, up 192,000 b/d from the level available before sanctions were imposed.
To boost the output of Merey 16, PDVSA will go to the international oil market to buy 2 million barrels — about 64,500 b/d — of light crude oil, according to the technical report.
Exports of Merey 16 will be destined mainly to China and India. According to the report, PDVSA will send 240,000 b/d to China and 240,000 b/d to India, but volumes could be higher.
The administration of US President Donald Trump January 28 unveiled sanctions on PDVSA, which served as a de facto ban on US crude imports of Venezuelan oil and an immediate ban on US exports of diluent to Venezuela. The new sanctions require any payment for crude from PDVSA to be deposited into blocked accounts within the US. The funds would ultimately be transferred to a new Venezuelan government, which is led on an interim basis by Juan Guaido, if and when Nicolas Maduro relinquishes power.
The US Treasury February 1 also gave non-US companies three months to wind down transactions with PDVSA that involve the US financial system, essentially prohibiting sales of PDVSA crude and products in dollars.