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Surging Oil Exports Lead To Largest Canadian Trade Surplus Since 2008

Canada booked in June its highest trade surplus since 2008 as energy exports jumped to their highest level since March 2019, Statistics Canada said on Thursday.  

Canada’s trade balance turned into a surplus in June after a trade deficit in May, thanks to a surge in exports. Nearly half of the rise came from energy exports led by crude oil, the statistics office said.

Canadian trade surplus stood at US$2.56 billion (C$3.2 billion) in June, as exports rose 8.7 percent while imports declined by 1.0 percent. 

Total exports reached a record, while exports of energy products jumped by 22.9 percent to US$9 billion (C$11.3 billion) in June, the highest level since March 2019, Statistics Canada said. The US$1.7 billion (C$2.1 billion) rise, which accounted for almost half of the gain in total exports, was mainly attributable to a 25.7-percent surge in crude oil exports.

“While crude oil prices increased in June, the rise in export value was mainly the result of higher volumes, which were up following a slowdown in crude oil production in Canada in April and May,” Statistics Canada said.

The country’s exports of refined petroleum energy products and natural gas also jumped in June, by 37.1 percent and 23.3 percent, respectively.

Canada’s exports to its main trade partner, the United States, also rose to a record in June, driven by increased exports of crude oil, passenger cars, and light trucks. Canada’s trade surplus with the United States widened from US$4.7 billion (C$5.9 billion) in May to US$6.6 billion (C$8.3 billion) in June, the largest surplus since August 2008, Statistics Canada said.

In May this year, Argus reported that Canadian crude oil exports to the United States were going to increase this year as additional pipeline capacity comes online and oil sands output increases. Moreover, demand for heavy crude has also been on the rise, with few producers available.

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By Charles Kennedy for Oilprice.com

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