Biden promises to address supply chain issues

  • Market: Agriculture, Biofuels, Chemicals, Coal, Crude oil, Fertilizers, Metals, Oil products, Petrochemicals
  • 02/03/22

US president Joe Biden pledged in his first State of the Union address to improve the nation's economy by fixing the strained supply chain, repairing crumbling highways and bridges and increasing domestic manufacturing.

Inflation is robbing families of benefits they might gain from record job growth and higher wages, he said yesterday. "That is why my top priority is getting prices under control," Biden said.

Inflation has worsened in part because of a drop in domestic manufacturing and disrupted supply chains that bring imports to the US at a higher cost. "When factories close, it takes longer to make goods and get them from the warehouse to the store, and prices go up."

Biden plans to control inflation and lower costs by making more goods in the US, including automobiles and semiconductors.

"Instead of relying on foreign supply chains, let us make it in America," Biden said. His said his plan for domestic infrastructure will result in "more goods moving faster and cheaper in America."

Repairing transportation infrastructure is a key part of the plan. Supply chains have been upset for more than a year because of a surge in imports following an initial slow down in the first months of the Covid-19 pandemic.

"We will create good jobs for millions of Americans, modernizing roads, airports, ports and waterways all across America," Biden said. "We will not be able to compete for the jobs of the 21st century if we do not fix that."

Work will begin this year to fix more than 65,000 miles of highway and 1,500 bridges that are in disrepair. Other infrastructure plans include construction of a national network of electric vehicle charging stations, replacement of poisonous lead water pipes and improved availability of affordable high-speed internet.

Biden's comments underscore plans announced last week to fix logistics supply chains by making upgrades to infrastructure, including a $450mn grant program for US ports.


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22/05/24

UK general election set for 4 July

UK general election set for 4 July

London, 22 May (Argus) — A general election will take place in the UK on 4 July, prime minister Rishi Sunak said today. The announcement coincides with official data showing that UK inflation has fallen to its lowest level in nearly three years. Labour, the country's main opposition party led by Keir Starmer, has held a substantial lead in polls in recent months and performed well in local elections earlier this month. It won nearly 200 seats on local councils, as well as several regional mayoral contests, while the ruling Conservative Party lost almost 500 council seats. The Conservatives have been in power since 2010 and have fielded five prime ministers during that time. The two main parties are likely to release more detailed manifestos once the election campaign begins, but their current respective energy policies have many similarities. Both back a windfall tax on oil and gas producers and support nuclear power. They both also support offshore wind and solar power, although Labour has incrementally more ambitious targets for those renewables and has plans for more onshore wind. Labour also wants a zero-carbon power grid by 2030 , while the Conservatives are aiming for that in 2035. The Conservatives have rolled back some climate policy since Sunak became prime minister, while Labour in February backed down on its pledge to spend £28bn/yr ($35.6bn/yr) on the country's energy transition, if it wins the election. For a general election to take place in the UK, the prime minister must request permission from the British monarch — King Charles III — who then dissolves parliament. A general election must take place at least once every five years in the UK, although a prime minister can call one at any point. The UK's last general election was held on 12 December 2019 and Boris Johnson was elected prime minister. There have since then been two prime ministers — Liz Truss in September-October 2022 — and Sunak. Truss was selected by Conservative Party members and Sunak became prime minister in October 2022 after the only other candidate withdrew from the leadership contest. The Conservatives hold 344 seats out of 650 in the House of Commons, the UK's lower house of parliament. But 105 members of parliament have said that they will not run at the next election, 66 of whom are Conservatives. By Georgia Gratton Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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US crude stocks rise by 1.8mn bl last week: Update


22/05/24
News
22/05/24

US crude stocks rise by 1.8mn bl last week: Update

Adds report details starting in seventh paragraph. Calgary, 22 May (Argus) — US crude inventories rose by 1.8mn bl last week on a sizable build in the Gulf coast region, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) reported today. Crude stocks across the US came in at 458.8mn bl in the week ended 17 May, up from 457mn bl a week earlier. Inventories were up by by 3.7mn bl compared to a year earlier. Stocks in the US Gulf coast rose on the week by 3.6mn bl to 261.5mn bl, approaching a 12-month high set in the week ended 26 April when stocks were at 261.6mn bl. The week-over-week build in the US Gulf coast ranks as the fifth largest through the first 20 weeks of the year. Inventories at the Cushing storage hub in Oklahoma rose by 1.3mn bl to 36.3mn bl, but that was still 910,000 bl lower than the same week in 2023. Crude inventories at the US Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) increased by 993,000 bl to 368.8mn bl, the largest weekly build so far this year. SPR stocks are not included in the overall EIA commercial crude inventory figures. US crude exports rose last week by 595,000 b/d to 4.7mn b/d, while imports fell by 81,000 b/d to 6.7mn b/d. Net imports fell by 676,000 b/d to 1.9mn b/d as a result. Domestic crude output was steady at 13.1mn b/d. US crude refiners processed about 16.9mn b/d last week, up by 241,000 b/d from the week prior and the highest since the week ended 12 January. Runs were 354,000 b/d higher than the same week in 2023. Refinery utilization rates on average rose to 91.7pc nationwide, up from 90.4pc in the prior week and 91.7pc in the same week of 2023. Refiners in the midcontinent and Gulf coast regions drove the weekly gains, each climbing to multi-month highs. Utilization rates in the midcontinent rose to 94.8pc from 90.8pc in the week prior while rates in the Gulf coast climbed to 93.7pc from 92.7pc. By Brett Holmes US weekly crude stocks/movements Stocks mn bl 17-May 10-May ±% Year ago ±% Crude oil (excluding SPR) 458.8 457.0 0.4% 455.2 0.8% - Cushing crude 36.3 35.0 3.8% 37.2 -2.4% Imports/exports '000 b/d Crude imports 6,663 6,744 -1.2% 5,850 13.9% Crude exports 4,730 4,135 14.4% 4,549 4.0% Refinery usage Refinery inputs '000 b/d 16,894 16,653 1.4% 16,540 2.1% Refinery utilisation % 91.7 90.4 1.4% 91.7 0.0% Production mn b/d 13.1 13.1 0.0% 12.3 6.5% — US Energy Information Administration Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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ThyssenKrupp Schulte to close seven sites: sources


22/05/24
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22/05/24

ThyssenKrupp Schulte to close seven sites: sources

London, 22 May (Argus) — ThyssenKrupp Schulte will close seven sites as part of its restructuring drive, market sources told Argus today. The company will close stockholding warehouses in Braunschweig, Rheine, Munich, Nuremberg, Freiberg, Mannheim and Frankfurt, according to multiple market sources. Last month the company said it would be closing sites and cutting around 450 jobs, but did not reveal which sites would be affected. "Fundamental structural adjustments are necessary to better respond to market changes in the future", the company said when it announced the restructuring, citing declining materials demand and increasing demand for materials-related services. All the impacted locations are stockholding sites and do not provide additional processing. ThyssenKrupp Schulte is part of ThyssenKrupp Materials Services and distributes stainless, carbon and non-ferrous metals from around 40 locations. A ThyssenKrupp Materials Services spokesperson said it could not comment on the affected locations, as "discussions with the respective co-determination bodies have only just begun and the details of the transformation are the subject of these discussions". "At ThyssenKrupp Schulte we are aiming to transform the business model in order to increase the company's profitability and enable Schulte to respond even better to changing customer needs," the spokesperson added. By Colin Richardson Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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US WTI crude flows to India climb in April


22/05/24
News
22/05/24

US WTI crude flows to India climb in April

Singapore, 22 May (Argus) — Improved arbitrage economics and firmer demand for petrochemical feedstocks helped boost exports of naphtha-rich US WTI crude to India in April to its highest level in nearly a year, according to vessel tracking data. Around 208,000 b/d of light sweet WTI departed the US Gulf Coast for India in April, preliminary data from global trade analytics platform Kpler and Vortexa show. The shipments are to discharge at various Indian ports mostly in June, although the vessels' final destinations are still subject to change. The April volumes were higher compared with India-bound exports in March at an average of about 159,000 b/d and the highest monthly shipments of WTI from the US to India since May 2023, according to Kpler and Vortexa. Indian refiners had stepped up their purchases of WTI in recent months as prices for the grade on a delivered basis were deemed competitive compared with comparable alternatives such as Abu Dhabi light sour Murban crude, sources close to international trading firms and Indian refiners told Argus. Weak European demand as a result of refinery turnarounds had weighed on April-loading WTI prices, prompting other Asian refiners like China's state-controlled Sinopec to also buy June-delivery cargoes. The increase in WTI flows to India follow Indian refiners shunning light sweet ESPO Blend and Sokol crude from far east Russia earlier this year because of tightening US sanctions, prompting refiners to consider other alternative grades of similar quality. While Indian refiners have resumed purchases of ESPO Blend and Sokol crude loading in May and June following weaker demand from the grade's usual buyers in China, WTI exports to India remain steady. State-controlled Bharat Petroleum (BPCL) has signed a deal with BP to buy 1mn bl/month of WTI for four months starting in June, while preliminary data from Kpler and Vortexa show that more than 210,000 b/d of WTI has already departed for India in the first half of this month. Petrochemical push WTI is appealing for Indian refiners as the grade has a higher yield of naphtha, a key petrochemical feedstock, than other options such as Murban and west African crude, with Indian refiners looking to increase their petrochemical output. Naphtha comprises roughly 35pc of WTI's product yield, while Murban has a higher yield of gasoil and jet-kerosine than WTI. Despite Murban prices also coming under pressure as a result of Abu Dhabi's state-owned Adnoc diverting more of its heavier Upper Zakum crude to the domestic Ruwais refinery and freeing up more Murban for exports , Indian refiners prefer to import WTI for its high naphtha yields, market participants said. Firmer domestic demand has cut India's naphtha exports, with Indian refiners keeping larger volumes for use as a petrochemical feedstock. India's naphtha exports in 2023 were around 126,000 b/d (5.15mn t), down by about 17pc from average exports of 151,000 b/d in 2022, according to oil ministry data. Indian state-controlled refiners have instead focused on expanding their refining capacity , with a view to increase their diversification into petrochemicals to meet export demand. Most state-controlled refiners plan new petrochemical capacity.BPCL's expansion of its 156,000 b/d Bina refinery to 220,000 b/d will feature a new chemicals complex and produce more petrochemical products like ethylene and propylene. Hindustan Petroleum is aiming to commission an integrated petrochemical complex at its new 180,000 b/d Barmer refinery in 2025. By Sathya Narayanan and Roshni Devi Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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México compra más gasolina asiática


21/05/24
News
21/05/24

México compra más gasolina asiática

Mexico City, 21 May (Argus) — México está recurriendo más a la gasolina asiática, complementando las importaciones desde la costa del Golfo de EE. UU. para ayudar a satisfacer alrededor de 60pc de la demanda que la producción doméstica no cubre. PMI, el brazo de comercio internacional de la estatal Pemex, compró inusualmente la semana pasada cuatro cargamentos de gasolina asiática para cargar en mayo, además de un envío que ya había comprado para cargar entre el 20 y el 22 de mayo, lo que llevó el total de cargas asiáticas a cinco en el mes. Las cargas se compraron a una refinería estatal china, una empresa comercial estatal china y una empresa comercial con sede en Suiza, según fuentes del mercado. Como resultado, es probable que cinco cargas de aproximadamente 296,000 bl cada una se dirijan a México en mayo. Se esperaba que Asia enviara solo una carga de gasolina a México en mayo, en comparación con cuatro cargas enviadas en abril debido a un arbitraje cerrado. Pero un incidente en la refinería de Tula de Pemex (315,000 b/d), que produce alrededor de 24pc de la gasolina de la empresa, podría haber influido en la decisión de la empresa de comprar más gasolina asiática. Pemex está trabajando para reiniciar la refinería después de un corte de energía el 13 de mayo, y los trabajos de reparación podrían tardar unas dos semanas, dicen las fuentes. México ha importado gasolina ocasionalmente desde Asia durante varios años, pero PMI se convirtió en un comprador frecuente desde abril de 2023. Los cargamentos de gasolina asiática que llegaron a puertos mexicanos ascienden a 54,000 b/d en mayo, frente a los 3,800 b/d de abril, según los datos de Vortexa. Las importaciones de gasolina asiática de mayo aumentaron en 7pc año con año, según los mismos datos. Durante todo el año 2023, México ingresó 47,000 b/d de gasolina de Asia, además de 18,000 b/d de diésel y 3,000 b/d de turbosina, para un total de 68,000 b/d de importaciones de combustible de Asia, tres veces más que en 2022, muestran los datos de Vortexa. México ha dependido de las importaciones, principalmente de la costa del Golfo de EE.UU., para cubrir parte de su demanda de gasolina desde 1990, pero la cuota de importaciones aumentó exponencialmente a partir de 2006, ya que las refinerías de Pemex no pudieron seguir el ritmo de aumento de la demanda. Las importaciones de gasolina aumentaron de nuevo tras la reforma energética de 2014, que abrió los mercados de combustibles a la inversión del sector privado. Retroceso Pero desde 2019, el país ha vuelto a un entorno más restrictivo para las empresas del sector privado bajo la administración del presidente Andrés Manuel López Obrador, que ha realizado inversiones de miles de millones de dólares en las capacidades de refinación de Pemex para alcanzar el ambicioso objetivo de autosuficiencia en gasolina y diésel. Aunque estas inversiones dieron lugar a niveles máximos de ocho años en tasas de rendimiento de las refinerías domesticas de Pemex en marzo, impulsando la disminución de las importaciones de combustible, los participantes del mercado permanecen escépticos de una fuerte caída sostenida en las importaciones de combustible de México. A pesar del aumento en el proceso de crudo de las refinerías, Pemex y las empresas privadas siguen importando 481,000 b/d de gasolina, o 60pc de la demanda de gasolina de México, según los últimos datos de la secretaria de energía. Incluso cuando comience operaciones la nueva refinería Olmeca (340,000 b/d), que enfrenta múltiples retrasos, la creciente demanda y los desafíos operativos en las otras refinerías harán que México continúe dependiendo de las importaciones de combustible. Es probable que las importaciones de combustible de México aumenten en la segunda mitad del año, ya que los inventarios de Pemex tienden a disminuir en junio impulsados por el aumento de la demanda. Dado que las empresas del sector privado y Pemex importan la mayoría de las cargas de gasolina desde la costa del Golfo de EE.UU., se espera que la empresa estatal continúe importando ocasionalmente desde Asia. Las importaciones de combustible asiático representaron aproximadamente entre 7 y 8pc de las importaciones marítimas totales de combustible de México en 2023, y las importaciones desde EE. UU. representaron 78pc del total. Por Antonio Gozain Cargamentos de gasolina asiática enviados a México ’000b/d Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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