Belgian oil tanker and storage operator Euronav on Thursday reported a 30% increase in its quarterly core profit, helped by recovering freight rates and a positive impact from the war in Ukraine.

“The conflict in Ukraine has driven considerable dislocation in tanker market freight patterns as sanctions and so-called self-sanctioning by market participants has driven ton-mile growth,” Chief Executive Officer Hugo De Stoop said in a statement.

Ton mile is an industry measure incorporating volumes and distance.

Euronav, which in 2021 was hit by slower-than-expected recovery in oil supply and Omicron-related curbs, said it was set to further benefit from rising oil production and dislocation caused by the geopolitical events.

“The uplift to freight rates continues to have momentum as oil supplies have increased driven by higher prices, OPEC+ production rising and strategic reserve releases,” the CEO said.

The Antwerp-based group, which provides crude oil shipping and storage services, however said that some headwinds remained, pointing to the International Energy Agency’s lowered forecasts for crude demand in 2022.

The broader and medium-term outlook for the tanker sector remained constructive, Euronav said.

Despite growing pressure from Western nations to increase oil production since Russia invaded Ukraine on Feb. 24, the OPEC+ members are sticking to plans for a modest increase in oil output. Read full story

Euronav’s proportionate earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortisation (EBITDA) came in at $42.9 million for the first three months of 2022, compared with $33.1 million a year earlier.

Its net loss narrowed to $43.4 million from $71 million a year earlier.

(Reporting by Federica Mileo and Dagmarah Mackos; editing by Milla Nissi)

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