This month, the Shamrock team attended the 12th ICIS Pan American Base Oils & Lubricants Conference held in Jersey City, USA.
The Conference, focused on the Americas, looked at the drive for performance and innovation and its impact on the global base stock market.
The North American base oil market is an important one, producing 21% of the global production capacity of base oils and 46% of Group II total production capacity. However, sluggish GDP growth has meant a lower level of demand for lubricants. Additionally, the market is heavily reliant on exports of the surpluses to maintain high plant utilisation and efficient operations. It was cited that about a third of sustainable US base oil capacity is exported.
In direct contrast is the Brazilian lubricant market which has been retracting for the past three years. However, recovery is expected in 2017. Further, with a variety of trends in play – lower emissions regulations, OEM developing more efficient engine models requiring superior performance lubricants, Brazil’s position as a premium lubricants specialist and a base oils market over supply – Brazil has a competitive advantage and better value extraction.
Another notable presentation looked at the trends in polyalphaolefins (PAO) and their benefits, citing that next generation lubricants may require higher levels of PAO to meet increasing performance requirements.
Overall the Conference was packed with great insights and allowed us to share our response and vision of the global lubricant market with other participants. At Shamrock, we want to continue to connect US refineries with blenders and provide proven and reliable value added services for businesses looking to save time, effort, and risks associated with the base oils market.