February 14 2022
"The Black Sea," explains Vivek Srivastava, "is a major export region for several key commodities, including crude oil, refined petroleum products, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), steel, grain and other agricultural products. Dry bulk exports had a particularly strong January. However, as shown in the chart above, dry goods shipments in February are on track for a 44% month-over-month decline. They are 15% below the five-year average for this time of year and are at the lower end of their 2017-2021 range."
In oil, the situation is worse according to Vivek Srivastava: "Oil exports are doing even worse, although other factors are at play, with generally weak demand for the region's Caspian-grade crude oil reported by Asian refiners, who make up a large part of its customer base. January exports were again relatively strong, as shown in the chart below. But February volumes are poised to suffer a 45% month-over-month decline and will be 37% below the five-year average for this time of year."
"Meanwhile, LPG volumes are being impacted to some degree, but are not as affected. This includes ammonia, which is mainly used for fertilizer production, and other chemical gases. Black Sea exports are on track for a 27% month-over-month decline, putting them about -24% below the five-year average and at the lower end of the 2017-2021 range."
The data shows that Black Sea trade is experiencing at least a partial blockage.