The United States’ import of Nigeria’s crude oil increased by 32.1 per cent to 52.36 million barrels in the first half of 2017 compared to the same period in 2016, a development that points to a post-Shale boom re-establishment of increased crude transactions with Nigeria.
The US Energy Information Administration, the statistical arm of the Energy Department, revealed this in its latest data.
Nigeria saw significant reduction in the US imports of its crude in recent years, starting from 2012, following the shale oil production boom.
It stated that the country bought a record 10.24 million barrels of crude from Nigeria in March, the highest monthly import since July 2013.
It imported 9.78 million barrels in January; 5.96 million barrels in February; 9.16 million barrels in April; 8.69 million barrels in May and 8.53 million barrels in June.
By international market price index within the period, Bonny Light, Nigeria’s main export grade, averaging $51 per barrel in the first half of the year, the 52.36 million barrels imported by the US translate to earnings of about $2.67bn for the country.
The data shows that the US almost tripled the volume of crude oil bought from Nigeria in 2016, with the biggest monthly import of 8.43 million barrels in July. It imported 76.9 million barrels of Nigeria’s oil last year, up from 19.9 million barrels in 2015.
In recent years, starting from 2012, Nigeria witnessed significant reduction in US imports of its crude following the shale oil production boom.
US import of Nigeria’s crude fell to 6.17 million in June 2013 from 10.115 million barrels in May, and about 40 million barrels in March 2007.
In 2014, when global oil prices started to fall from a peak of $115 per barrel, Nigeria saw a further drop in US imports of its crude from 87.4 million barrels in 2013 to a record low of 21.2 million barrels.
The situation declined to the point that for the first time in decades, the US did not purchase any barrel of Nigeria’s crude in July and August of 2014, and June 2015.