United States becomes top source for Britain’s oil imports as their own imports drop

According to data from cargo-tracking and intelligence company Kpler, January’s data showed crude oil imports from the United States to Britain overtook supplies from other countries for the first time since such shipments began in 2015, when the United States lifted an oil export ban.

British imports of U.S. oil reached 264,000 barrels per day (bpd) last month, compared with Norway's 181,000 bpd in second place and total imports of 738,000 bpd. Other top exporters to Britain include Algeria, Russia, Nigeria, and Canada.

At the same time, less foreign oil is reaching American shores, as OPEC production cuts kick in and U.S. sanctions on Venezuela curb its exports.

Crude shipments to the U.S. from OPEC and its partners fell to 1.41 million barrels a day in January, the lowest in five years, according to Kpler. Shrinking Iraqi imports and deep output cuts by Saudi Arabia fueled the decline. Venezuela’s exports to the U.S. dropped by nearly 30 percent: almost half of it has yet to discharge into U.S. ports and U.S. sanctions may keep the rest of it on the water, with nearly 7.6 million barrels of Venezuelan crude currently floating in the Gulf of Mexico.