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Ultra Cheap Canadian Oil Dominates U.S. Markets

While U.S. crude oil imports from OPEC and Mexico have slumped over the past decade and a half, crude imports from Canada have more than doubled due to the price and refinery operational advantages, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) said on Thursday.

Last year, Canadian crude oil imports into the United States accounted for more than half, or 56 percent, of total American crude imports, EIA’s Petroleum Supply Monthly showed. Imports from Canada averaged 3.8 million bpd in 2019, more than double the U.S. imports from its neighbor to the north in 2005.

At the same time, American imports of crude oil from OPEC’s Saudi Arabia and Venezuela, as well as from Mexico, significantly dropped between 2005 and 2019, mostly due to the surge in U.S. crude oil production over the past decade, the EIA said.

In 2005, U.S. oil imports averaged a record 10.1 million bpd, 60 percent of which came from Canada, Mexico, Saudi Arabia, and Venezuela. Each of those oil producers held a market share of between 12 percent and 16 percent, as per EIA data.

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By 2019, Canada’s exports had more than doubled to 3.8 million bpd, seven times larger than the volumes the U.S. imported from OPEC’s top producer and the world’s largest exporter, Saudi Arabia – 500,000 bpd. U.S. oil imports from Mexico averaged 599,000 bpd last year, six times less than the American imports from Canada, according to EIA’s monthly data from 2019. Venezuelan imports were virtually nonexistent for most of the year after the U.S. slapped sanctions on Venezuela’s oil industry.

Since the start of 2020, the U.S. was a net exporter of crude and petroleum products in each of the weeks in January and February, EIA data showed earlier this month.

The United States exported more crude oil and petroleum products than it imported in September 2019—the first month in which America was a net petroleum exporter since monthly records began in 1973, the EIA said at the end of last year.

By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com

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