ORLEN refineries to process American oil
PKN ORLEN increases diversification of crude oil supplies across the entire Group. WTI crude from the US will be supplied to ORLEN refineries in the Czech Republic and Lithuania. The Company does not rule out that this source may become a permanent fixture in the ORLEN Group’s supply portfolio.
“We are pursuing a strategic goal to diversify our oil supply sources. Handling all matters related to oil purchases from the Group level gives us the upper hand in negotiating the best possible terms. Buying WTI crude helps maximise yields, and our objective is to secure the needs of customers in our region. Supplies of light crude, such as the American WTI, optimise processing, especially into the most desired fractions like gasoline and diesel oil. This way we strengthen the entire region’s energy security,” said Daniel Obajtek, CEO and President of the PKN ORLEN Management Board.
Under spot contracts, the Mažeikiai and Czech refineries will each receive 80,000 tonnes of the American WTI. In line with its strategy, the ORLEN Group is looking for new markets, expanding both the portfolio of suppliers and increasing the number of crude oil types to process. Purchase opportunities and the extent to which the ORLEN Group’s existing technologies allow it to process diverse crude oils are monitored on an ongoing basis, taking into account prevailing global trends, including increased demand for finished petroleum products.
WTI (West Texas Intermediate) oil is a light sweet crude (with relatively low density and low sulfur content) produced in the Southwestern US. Such properties make it possible to yield large volumes of, for instance, diesel oil in the distillation process. After the United States lifted the WTI export ban imposed many years ago, the first cargo of the oil was imported in 2017 to Poland by PKN ORLEN. The oil was then processed at the Company refinery in Płock.
In pursuit of its diversification policy, PKN ORLEN imports 30% of its crude oil from sources other than Russia. To compare, in 2007–2013, Russia accounted for more than 90% of PKN ORLEN’s oil imports. The ORLEN Group is constantly looking for new markets and expanding both the portfolio of suppliers and types of crude oil it processes. The ORLEN Group refineries have already processed crudes from Iraq, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Venezuela, Norway, and the US. PKN ORLEN also has binding forward contracts with producers from countries east of Poland and the Persian Gulf, under which it has secured supplies to its refineries in Poland, the Czech Republic and Lithuania.