Oil export to U.S. imminent
THERE are indications that Nigeria may resume crude oil export to the United States (U.S.) soon.
A visiting Professor and Fellow of the Emerald Energy Institute of the University of Port Harcourt, Prof. Paul Michael Wihbey, predicted the return of large volumes of Nigerian crude to the lucrative U.S. market at a public lecture chaired by former Special Adviser to the President on Energy Matters, Dr. Emmanuel Egbogah, at the Institute.
Speaking to an audience of prominent oil and gas experts, faculty members, and graduate students at the University of Port Harcourt, Wihbey’s forecast was fast becoming a reality as Platts, Exxon, PES, and Statoil are chartering tankers to take Nigerian crude to the U.S. for end-September loading cargoes. Traders also report Vitol’s October 3-4 loading Qua Iboe cargo was heading to the U.S.
Wihbey had prepared his call of this extraordinary market movement several weeks prior to his return to the Emerald Energy Institute, UNIPORT. His analysis was the first academic or professional statement on the likely return of Nigeria crude to the U.S.
Wihbey’s take on Nigeria’s export opportunity during a low oil price era has valuable economic, commercial and geopolitical implications that EEI is currently researching and evaluating on behalf of the oil and gas sector in Nigeria.
As he indicated during his presentation, market, policy, and regulatory changes in the United States have led to a narrowing of the WTI/Brent price differential favoring the importation of Nigerian light crudes.