The first American oil tanker to navigate from the United States, following the lifting of restrictions on the country’s crude oil exports, recently arrived in Europe.
This signals an important landmark for the oil industry, which is currently fighting a collapse in oil prices.
Carrying a cargo of crude oil named ‘Liquid American Freedom’ by the U.S. House energy and commerce committee members, the Panamax oil tanker dubbed ‘Theo T’ docked at the port of Fos, in France, on Wednesday night, after setting out from Texas almost three weeks earlier.
The cargo, which belongs to the largest independent oil trader on the globe, Vitol, is expected to be unloaded at the port, which is close to Marseille. It will then be piped to one of the two refineries owned by Vitol in Europe, under a joint endeavor with Carlyle Group.
It is believed that the oil is most likely to end up at Switzerland’s Cressier refinery, Varo Energy, which is operated by the two companies, according to sources in the trade. However, there is a possibility that it could be piped to Varo Energy’s Bavarian refinery.
U.S. crude oil exports have been restricted since the 1970s when Arab oil embargoes were set up, but this ban was finally lifted at the end of 2015, allowing U.S. oil exporters to better compete with the likes of Fuchs Petrolube (which produces Fuchs Ecocool Ultralife A), Royal Dutch Shell and many other major global oil companies.