Italy diesel exports, output rise

OREANDA-NEWS. November 09, 2015. Stronger margins for Italy's refiners, plus improving domestic demand, have increased imports, exports and estimated production of 10ppm sulphur diesel in the country this year.

Italy is a net exporter of 10ppm diesel to other nations in the EU and Mediterranean and improved margins for its refiners saw its exports reach 148,000 b/d over the first seven months of the year, up by 41pc on the same period a year earlier, according to data from the EU's statistics service Eurostat. By far Italy's biggest export market is Turkey, which imported 46,000 b/d of Italian 10ppm diesel. Eurostat figures also class another 23,000 b/d as being exported to Gibraltar over the period, although the bulk is in transit to third countries. The next largest importer of Italian diesel in January-July was France with 18,700 b/d, followed by Slovenia with 17,700 b/d.

Italy also imported 61,300 b/d of 10ppm diesel in the first seven months, up by 8.6pc year on year, with the growth skewed towards the first quarter and actually declining in July.

The biggest exporter to Italy was the US at 16,200 b/d between January and July. It was followed by Saudi Arabia, a new exporter to Italy that only sent its first diesel cargoes to the country in May, as refining expansions boosted its middle distillate export capacity. Over the January to July period Saudi Arabia exported 11,400 b/d to Italy, but between May and July it shipped 26,200 b/d.

Italy's refiners are seeing improved domestic demand, which rose by 2.3pc to reach 477,000 b/d in the year to the end of July, said the economic development ministry.

Extrapolation from the data gives an estimated level of Italian 10ppm diesel production of 574,300 b/d over the first seven months of the year, up by 11.5pc on the same period in 2014. But estimated output rose as high as 651,900 b/d in July, up by 19pc on the same month a year earlier. This is in line with statements from Italian refiner Saras, which said it has been running its 300,000 b/d unit in Sardinia close to capacity through the summer. The firm said it hiked its middle distillate share of production in the first half of the year as it sought to cash in on significantly improved margins.