TURKEY: Oil imports increase but domestic output falls

15 March 1996

Refined products consumption and crude oil imports rose by 9.7 per cent and 10.9 per cent respectively in 1995 compared with the previous year. But domestic crude oil production fell by 4.6 per cent, according to the general directorate of petroleum affairs in the country's Energy & Natural Resources Ministry.

Refined products consumption rose over the period to 27.2 million tonnes. This reflected rapid recovery from economic crisis in 1994, oil industry sources say.

Consumption of gasoline rose by 10.9 per cent to 3.9 million tonnes, fuel oil by 8 per cent to 8 million tonnes, and liquid petroleum gas by 14.2 per cent to 2.3 million tonnes. Jet fuel consumption soared by 66 per cent to 867,237 tonnes, due to a booming tourism season in 1995, sources say.

However, diesel consumption increased at a relatively slower pace by 5.3 per cent to 8.1 million tonnes. These figures do not include sales of diesel smuggled at an annual rate of around 700,000-800,000 tonnes across the Iraqi border in defiance of UN sanctions, but overlooked by Ankara for their importance to the economy of the country's deprived south east, industry sources say.

Oil imports rose to 23.5 million tonnes over the period, the directorate says. Saudi Arabia remained the leading supplier with 9.4 million tonnes, although this represented a 4.4 per cent decline from 1994. Next came Iran with a little changed 5.4 million tonnes, and then Libya, up 8 per cent to 2.7 million tonnes. Supplies from Russia, Syria, Algeria and Egypt increased by 1.4 million- 1.6 million tonnes each, but those from the UAE fell markedly by 92.5 per cent to 196,247 tonnes.

Domestic production declined to 3.5 million tonnes in a continuing downward trend as mainly small, difficult, south-eastern fields were depleted. Output by state Turkish Petroleum Corporation decreased by 2 .35 per cent to 2. 48 million tonnes.

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