The Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy announced on March 5 that South Korea’s petroleum product production, consumption and exports as well as crude oil imports hit all-time highs last year unlike petroleum product imports.
Specifically, crude oil imports increased 3.7% year on year and reached 1.12 billion barrels. Imports from the United States, Britain and Kazakhstan increased a lot. The crude oil imports from the United States soared by 448.2% from a year earlier based on an increase in shale oil production while the crude oil imports from Kazakhstan skyrocketed by 516% based on the full-scale operation of the Kashagan Oil Field, which is one of the 10 largest oil fields in the world.
South Korea’s production of petroleum products such as gasoline, diesel and Bunker C fuel increased 5.7% from a year ago and hit an all-time high of 1.22 billion barrels based on an increase in demand both at home and abroad and the operation of new oil refining facilities.
The country’s petroleum product imports, in the meantime, showed a decline of 6.2% and totaled 310 million barrels. Naphtha imports fell 1.3% as a rapid increase in domestic production replaced imported naphtha to some extent.
On the petroleum product demand side, both consumption and exports reached new highs. The former increased 1.5% to 940 million barrels and the latter increased 4.4% to 509 million barrels, increasing for the fourth consecutive year. The export value totaled US$35 billion with a year-on-year increase of 32% and South Korea climbed two notches to sixth in the global export ranking.