October 11, 2017 / 5:41 AM / in 2 months

REFILE-Saudi Arabia trims oil exports to China, Japan in November - sources

(Fixes to make clear that information in penultimate paragraph came from Saudi oil ministry spokesman)

* Some in Japan get up to 10 pct less Saudi oil - sources

* Taiwan, Thailand, most S.Koreans get full volumes -sources

By Florence Tan and Osamu Tsukimori

SINGAPORE/TOKYO, Oct 11 (Reuters) - The world’s top oil exporter, Saudi Arabia, has trimmed crude supplies to its biggest buyers in Asia, multiple sources with knowledge of the matter said on Wednesday, as the kingdom looks to meet its commitment to an OPEC-led supply cut pact.

State-owned Saudi Aramco has trimmed supplies to at least three Japanese buyers and one in South Korea by up to 10 percent across different Saudi crude grades, trade sources said.

Some buyers in China will also be receiving less Saudi crude, they said. The people declined to be identified as they are not authorised to speak to the media.

Saudi Arabia cut crude allocations for November by 560,000 barrels per day (bpd) from customers’ requests for its crude, an oil ministry spokesman said on Monday.

At least one North Asian buyer asked for less oil, one of the people said, after Saudi Arabia raised the November price for its key Arab Light crude to the highest in 16 months.

The producer has cut exports to Japan, its largest customer in Asia, for a second month, they said. Still, Japan’s imports of Saudi crude in the first nine months of 2017 have risen 15 percent from the same period a year ago, Thomson Reuters Eikon data shows.

China’s imports of Saudi crude have inched up 1 percent over that time to 39.1 million tonnes from the same period last year.

Several customers in Taiwan, South Korea, Thailand and at least one buyer in Japan will receive full contractual volumes, the sources said, as Saudi Arabia looks to hold on to market share in the world’s fastest-growing oil demand region.

Saudi Aramco was not immediately available for comment.

While it has cut allocations, Saudi Arabia’s exports are set to rebound to 7.15 million bpd in November from low levels during the summer peak demand season, the Saudi oil ministry spokesman said.

OPEC along with Russia and other non-member oil producers agreed to cut output by around 1.8 million bpd from Jan. 1 this year until March 2018.

Reporting by Florence Tan in SINGAPORE and Osamu Tsukimori in TOKYO; Editing by Sonali Paul

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