Amid the historic market upheaval of 2020, the US pulled further ahead of Saudi Arabia as global markets underwent unprecedented volatility. In both cases exports fell year-on-year – as they did for No.3 exporter Russia – but the scale was considerably greater in Saudi Arabia.

In the end, US exports dropped by 190,000 b/d to 8.36mn b/d for 2020 according to Jodi statistics. EIA figures give a somewhat higher 8.51mn b/d if biofuels are included and 8.09mn b/d if they are excluded (see data, MEES, 19 March). But the US figure is in any case comfortably higher than that for Saudi Arabia whose oil exports fell by 660,000 b/d to 7.68mn b/d due to its participation in Opec+ cuts (MEES, 19 February). The Jodi data show that the US ended the year with a comfortable 380,000 b/d cushion on the kingdom (see charts). (CONTINUED - 1012 WORDS)