The U.S. Energy Information Administration said oil imports for the Gulf Coast reached their lowest level in more than 30 years in March as production from Permian Basin and other shale fields continues to rise. Imports averaged 1.8 million barrels a day in March – a decline of more than 70 percent since 2007. The EIA said the Gulf Coast has operated as a net exporter for the past five months. “Imports are being replaced by increased production of domestic crude oil,” the EIA said. “Together these trends have fundamentally changed how the Gulf Coast region is supplied with crude oil.” The Houston Chronicle said early reports for April and May show imports increasing to 1.9 million barrels per day.