North American crude influx has value for US west, east coasts

19 March 2013 17:15  [Source: ICIS news]

SAN ANTONIO, Texas (ICIS)--With the projected increases in North American crude oil production from shale plays and oil sands, the US west and east coasts are presented with economic opportunities, an industry analyst said on Tuesday.

Over the next three years, tight shale and oil sands production in the US and Canada are estimated to provide an additional 2m bbl/day in the market, which will put more stress on existing logistics in the southern US states, according to Michael Wojciechowski of Wood Mackenzie during the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) annual meeting.

Furthermore, the additional barrels may not fit into the current crude slate in the US Gulf Coast region, which presents an opportunity for refineries in other regions in the US.

Wojciechowski said the best values are on the east and west coasts, but current logistical issues mean those markets are not readily available.

For the west coast, some light sweet oil blends may be able to replace the declining production from the Alaska North Slope since they are similar blends, he said.

The east coast markets could take on more complex mid-continent grades, and more efficient logistic solutions could have a more significant economical benefit.

The AFPM annual meeting runs through Tuesday.

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By: Anna Matherne

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