Around 360,000t of US-loaded gasoil, mostly diesel, is estimated to have arrived in Europe in week 23, the highest volume since early November.
Vortexa data show imports of US diesel into Europe, including the Mediterranean, have been rising as seasonal spring US Gulf coast refinery maintenance work comes to an end.
Europe’s increased US gasoil intake on 4-10 June boosted its overall imports, which rose by around 10pc on a four-week rolling average basis.
More than 200,000t of US gasoil is expected to arrive in the European region in the week ending 17 June, based on tankers in transit and signalling destinations in Europe, with around another 270,000t expected the subsequent week.
Preliminary estimates point to June imports of US gasoil into Europe in June rising to their highest since August last year.
US to Lat-Am flows dip
The recent rise in European import activity from the US coincides with waning demand from Mexico and Brazil in recent weeks — the biggest importers of US gasoil.
Arrivals of US gasoil into the two Latin American countries for the week ending 10 June fell to just under 160,000, down from closer to 420,000t a week earlier.
US exports to Europe dropped sharply in late August and September after the arrival of Hurricane Harvey and record flooding in the US Gulf coast limited exports from the region.
The subsequent recovery in production was met with stronger diesel demand from Latin America, which in turn restricted US export availability to Europe during the first quarter of this year.
A sustained slowdown in US gasoil exports to Latin America would likely pave the way for a rise in transatlantic exports.
That said, lingering refinery issues in Mexico and political instability in Brazil will continue to provide some support to Latin American import demand.
Diesel VLCCs point to Europe
Mediterranean diesel supplies could be boosted in June by the arrival of the newly-built VLCC Maran Aphrodite, which loaded in the Asia-Pacific region. The tanker is currently signalling Malta as its destination, where it is now due around 17 June.
Prior to signalling Malta, she signalled Rotterdam, followed by New York, Southwold in the UK and Gibraltar as her end-destination.
Diesel cargo arrivals into the European region could also include newbuild VLCC DHT Stallion. The tanker is currently sailing towards the Cape of Good Hope and could potentially discharge its cargo in Europe during July.
It took on its diesel cargo in UAE waters towards the end of May, via ship-to-ship operations from tankers that loaded in Sikka.
And VLCC New Eminence is also now signalling Gibraltar as its end-destination, having loaded diesel/gasoil from Asia-Pacific during late May to early June.
The Ice June gasoil futures contract settled at a $666/t on 14 June, down from a three-and-a-half-year high of $704.25/t on 17 May.