A tanker of U.S. sour crude was delivered at Germany’s port of Rostock last week for the first time ever, according to sources, analysts and vessel tracking data, as local refiners test alternatives to Russian oil.
EU’s financial sanctions
The European Union plans an almost-complete embargo of Russian barrels by year-end, and is trying to wean itself off Russian crude imports, which have fed inland refineries in Germany, Poland and other central European nations via pipeline.
Refiners plan to replace Russian oil with seaborne Norwegian, Saudi Arabian, British and U.S. crude grades. Russia has already shown through its natural gas exports that it is willing to cut off European destinations in a tit-for-tat over the EU’s financial sanctions that followed Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine in February.
According to Refinitiv ship tracking data, the Capricorn Sun tanker loaded Mars Sour crude off the Louisiana coast in the United States and discharged at Rostock on Aug. 3.
The tanker was chartered by Shell, according to two sources and Refinitiv ship tracking data. It was estimated to have carried about 570,000 barrels, based on shipping data.
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