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baku petcoke

Quarter of Baku Petcoke Exported to India in 2015

Azerbaijan’s Baku refinery exported 53,000 tons of petroleum coke (petcoke) to India in in 2015. That’s about a quarter of Baku petcoke production for the year.

That number is especially significant given the fact that India imported no petroleum coke from Azerbaijan in 2014.

“Azerbaijani petcoke exports to India and other overseas countries is evidence that the petcoke market is becoming more global,” said Yury Burenko, director of petroleum coke at DYM Resources. “In 2015, we saw low-sulphur petcoke going from Baku to Canada, from Romania to Russia, which shows great potential for Turkmenistan 0.6 sulphur petcoke as well.”

The Heydar Aliyev Baku Oil Refinery

Baku refinery is a part of the state-owned company SOCAR. Among other products, it produces anode grade petcoke with a very low content of sulphur (up to 0.6 percent) and metals (V, Fe, Si and others) due to oil properties that come from the Caspian Sea.

The refinery produces 700 to 800 metric tons of petcoke daily, with an annual output estimated at 200,000 metric tons.

Azerbaijan Petcoke Export Structure

Russia remained one of the biggest importers of petcoke from Azerbaijan, although the sales geography was quite broad. Azerbaijan’s petcoke was supplied to a number of countries in 2015, including:

  • Russia: 177,306 metric tons
  • India: 53,376 metric tons
  • Canada: 15,266 metric tons
  • Ukraine: 14,733 metric tons
  • USA: 591 metric tons

Regional Context for Baku Petcoke

A similar crude oil source from the Caspian Sea is being used by another refinery in the region that produces petcoke: Turkmenbashi refinery. Turkmenistani petcoke also has a very low sulphur content (0.6 percent max) and very low metal content, especially of vanadium.

Caspian sea oil and natural gas infrastructure

Source: U.S. Energy Information Administration, U.S. Geological Survey, IHS EDIN

“Turkmenistani petcoke has the chance to be exported on the same markets as Azerbaijani petcoke,” Burenko said. At the moment, the main geographical markets for Turkmenbashi refinery petcoke are Russia and Tajikistan.”

Currently, logistics remain the main problem for Turkmenistanti petcoke trading, as Turkmenistan has no access to deep seaports. Export opportunities from Turkmenistan by the Volga-Don Canal are constricted due to low water levels, which limit cargo size by 3,000 tons. The issue could be solved by loading bigger vessels with Turkmenbashi petcoke from the Black Sea.

DYM Resources specializes in trading anode grade petcoke originating from ex-USSR countries and Eastern Europe. The company provides door-to-door logistical solutions including railway and dry bulk vessel transport.

Photo: Azerbaijan petcoke operations at Baku seaport

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caspian basin and central asia oil markets

DYM Resources Interviewed for Insights on Caspian Basin and Central Asia Oil Markets

DYM Resources’ Denis Varaksin was featured recently on CBC TV for his insights into the Caspian Basin and Central Asia oil markets.

Varaksin was interviewed during the SOCAR conference “Caspian Basin and Central Asia: Trade, Logistics, Oil Processing and Oil and Chemistry” in Baku, Azerbaijan.

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baku refinery

Baku Petcoke Production Halts for Third Time in Nine Months

Azerbaijan’s state owned Baku refinery has another petroleum coke (petcoke) production issue and cannot guarantee petcoke supplies to its customers in February, according to an industry source.

Baku exports low-sulphur petroleum coke to Russia and neighboring countries for electrode production. The refinery is not providing a timeline for when petcoke production may resume. This is at least the third time in the last nine months when the refinery has had problems with production. Every time, the refinery had to stop its petcoke export loading.

“Another disruption raises questions about the reliability of Baku refinery as a long-term, low-sulphur petroleum coke supplier,” the market source commented. “Supply shortage and high demand support high prices for low-sulphur petroleum coke in Russia and [the former Soviet Union], which are stable compared to last year’s levels.”

Baku refinery has the capacity to produce 20,000 to 25,000 tons of petroleum coke (with sulphur content below 0.6%) per month. The only low-sulphur alternative supplier in the ex-USSR market is Turkmenbashi refinery, which exports 10,000 to 15,000 tons of petroleum coke per month.

Source: DYM Resources

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