Attend PetroChem Wire's FREE Half-Day Seminar in Houston

You are warmly invited to “Now More Than Ever,” PetroChemWire's FREE seminar in Houston.

With more material all along the US petrochemical value chain now available to the world, experts from PCW – the provider of benchmark olefins and polymers prices for the CME and ICE – will discuss the volatile petrochemicals space, managing price risk, feedstock economics and the impact of new capacities.

You can also network at our cocktail reception following the presentations.

Where: Hearsay on the Green, 1515 Dallas St., Houston TX 77010

When: 2-5 p.m., March 20, 2018 (Cocktail reception 4-5 p.m.)

Speakers include:

Kathy Hall, CEO and Executive Editor, PCW

David Barry, Senior Editor, PCW

Robert Sharp, Senior Editor, PCW

Samantha Hartke, Product Manager, PCW

Trey Hamblett, VP of Chemicals Research, IIR Energy

US NGL exports up 15.2%, boosted by record Asian cargoes

HOUSTON, March 14, 2018 (PCW) -- US NGL exports rose about 184,000 b/d year-on-year in 2017 to nearly 1.396 million b/d, a 15.2% increase. Dec NGL exports hit a fresh record high of 1.55 million b/d, according to EIA data released last week.

With the full-year 2017 data now in, NGLs Week will analyze each of the purity products’ exports in the coming weeks, particularly looking at the destinations for these cargoes in order to better ascertain export demand going forward. But for this issue, we will look more broadly at exports as a whole.

In 2017, the top five export destinations remained the same: 1. Canada (248,167 b/d on average in 2017, down 14.4% from 2016); 2. Japan (219,250 b/d in 2017, up 43.5%); 3. China (147,333 b/d, up 27.7%), 4. Mexico (137,667 b/d, up 14.4%); and 5. South Korea (90,333 b/d, up 3.2%).

However, 2017 saw the emergence of a more diverse swath of destinations, as top exporter Canada saw its share of the export pie decrease on lower demand. Meanwhile, Asian appetite for US NGLs look like it is unlikely to abate any time soon, given OPEC production cuts, new PDH demand from China and rising petrochemical demand for lighter feedstock from Japan and South Korea.

Some new importers to watch in 2018: India, whose US imports rose to 60,583 b/d on average in 2017 from 3,857 in 2016 (a nearly 16-fold uptick) and Singapore: 58,500 b/d in 2017 on average from 45,364 b/d in 2016 (up 29%). In 2018, increased Asian demand is set to continue with expectations of larger exports to India, thanks largely to the fleet of six ethane-capable vessels (total capacity 4.92 million barrels) charged with moving US ethane to Indian petchems units.

Chinese demand is already rife to kick off the year, as are cargoes to Japan amid a frigid winter in northeast Asia. A need for Asian firms to diversify from traditional Saudi sources and their crude-related contract prices was also cited by several shipping analysts as a major reason for rising interest in US cargoes. With the opening of Mariner East 2, a pipeline built to move Appalachian NGLs and refined products for export out of Marcus Hook, in late 2Q an uptick in cargoes to Europe is highly likely this year as well. -- Samantha Hartke

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