Shipments are the first from the US since March 2019.
Even with very high day rates, the oil market contango means that floating storage makes economic sense.
WTI discounts are $6 to $7 a barrel, increasing pressure on producers to shut in wells.
Shipment comes as China returns to work and increases its demand for power.
Analysts estimate the global glut of crude could reach 1 billion barrels.
Freight charges from the Middle East to China doubled overnight.
Familiar challenges remain, but growing export markets buoy the midstream.