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Feb 2022

UCO supply from US vanishing

Our analysis of the latest available set of Eurostat data showed a massive contraction of the US origination and a strong rebound of the Asian supply.

  • The Union imported 1.26 million mt of UCO under the two main codes (151895+99) during 9M21 as during the same period in 2020, down 2%, amid a harsher competitive environment on the international market.
  • The UCO flow from the US literally vanished with only 30 KT brought in, compared to 90 KT in 9M20. The US imported less than 7 other origins.
  • The figure confirms the thirst of the US market, compared to 2017 when it delivered up to 250 KT of UCO to the EU.
  • Direct imports from China experienced a massive rebound from the previous year, recorded up 126% at an all-time high of 448 KT in 9M21.
  • Imports from SE Asia remained in the same range (310 KT).
  • Japan origination decreased by 26% to 24 KT. Data from the Japan Ministry of Finance suggested UCO exports increased in 2021 to 29 KT per quarter, up from 20 KT in 2020. Singapore, Malaysia and South Korea were the fastest growing destinations ex-Japan during the period.
  • Imports from the UK (-17% at 91) and Russia (-22% at 62) also proved to be weaker.
  • The fastest growing origin during the 9M21 period was Chile, recording a 132% growth rate to 56 KT.
  • The Top 10 origins delivered 1.08 million mt, or 86% of the total.