Newsletters/ April 2, 2021
Production & quality review
There are 9 refineries that produce base oils Groups I, II, III, and IV in Russia, along with 3 small re-refineries. The most produced Base Oil is Group I, with a wide range of different grades (including finished lubricants containing minimum quantities of additives and usually used as Base Oils). The range goes from light grades such as SN80 to medium grades such as SN350, and heavy grades such as Bright Stock. Also, there are products of Group II and III of the following grades: 2 cSt, 4 cSt, 6 cSt, 8 cSt. Recently, the production of Group IV base oils, PAO (Poly-Alpha-Olefins), was modernized and now is producing following grades: 2 cSt, 4 cSt, 6 cSt, 10 cSt, 12 cSt, and it is planned to produce 20, 25, and 40 cSt.
All these products have been in Shamrock’s portfolio for more than 10 years. Despite regulations changing in some regions to support a particular quality or origin, our customers have always found a need in Russian origin Base Oils and kept a constant production by using them.
Russian Base Oils follow the latest lubricants industry trends: higher thermal and oxidation stability, higher viscosity index, lower volatility, better low-temperature properties. In time, refineries have been even shifting and upgrading production from Group I to Group II and III. Moreover, Group II quality can be marketed as Group II+, while Group III of one of the producers and Group IV quality is like the best quality Base Oils Group III and IV in the World.
The wide range of Russian Base Oils Group I makes it possible to use them in almost all the applications – PCMO, HDMO, industrial – with few exceptions like for extreme applications such as very low or very high temperatures, extended drain intervals, or the latest OEM requirements. For these purposes, the application of Group II, III, and IV is recommended, especially for automotive rather than for industrial.
Markets’ demand and review
Naturally, Russian Base Oils are widely used, besides in the domestic market, in nearby countries: Ukraine, Belarus, China, Finland, Kazakhstan, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Uzbekistan, Turkey. Group I is primarily being used, but a full range of products is considered by local blenders.
The most common perception Asian lubricants’ producers had for Russian Base Oil was that base oils are very dark for the region. Most of them work with Group II/III formulation and Group I Asian Base Oil, which has a much lighter color than Russian and even European Base Oils. Recently with the global shortage of Base Oils, even blenders in Asia had to turn to Russian supplies to secure volume for their needs. Our customers in the region were impressed with the current quality improvement on Base Oils and were surprised by the color of our Industrial Oils offer. Our customers that have tried these grades are constantly asking for the same Russian quality.
Customers in Latin America are starting to understand that Russian Base Oils cannot be a big black box. Cuts such as SN350, SN650, SN900, SN1200, Bright Stock, which are not very familiar to the region, are now available with us, and in most cases, the quality & pricing make it a perfect fit.
Not only the automotive lubricant producers but also industrial lubricant manufacturers can benefit from these products. We highly recommend exploring this option in deep since you can find high-quality Group I, Group II, and even Group III base oils of Russian origin with us.
Considering Russia has its own standards (GHOST), we, as Shamrock, can help understand the equivalencies with typical region standards, such as the American ASTM.
Our call to action
We currently have several grades available for export. Our team will gladly look into your blending needs and advise on the best product that can be used without compromising your finished products’ quality. Get in touch with us and book your volumes now before being sold out.