|SOne of the supply issues facing the US in the
next several years is how changing gasoline specifications in the United
States will affect the availability of imports from other regions. As we showed in the previous slide, the ban
on MTBE, which requires very low RVP gasoline components to blend with
ethanol in order to produce RFG, reduces the number of import suppliers that
can provide acceptable RFG components.
|SU.S. sulfur constraints are also expected to
reduce the number of suppliers, but more for timing reasons than because the
United States is taking a unique specification path. The United States is moving towards low sulfur
product before many other regions do so.
|- Europe is
relatively close to U.S. standards, and its exports to the United States may
not be limited by sulfur. In fact,
with its tax incentive programs, gasoline being sold in some European
countries today has lower sulfur content than U.S. requirements.
|- South America
generally is producing gasoline with higher sulfur levels than in the United
States, and that is not expected to change soon.
|- Asia is
moving to lower sulfur levels in some countries, but still has higher sulfur
specifications in many regions.
|SRegional specification changes, along with
knowledge of the origin of our imports can give us a clue as to how the U.S.
specifications may impact import availability.