September 21, 2018 / 4:13 AM / a year ago

UPDATE 1-Vietnam's Nghi Son oil refinery offers first gasoline cargo for export

* Nghi Son offers cargo after winning approval for fuel exports

* Offers 30,000 T of 95-octane gasoline for Sept. 26-30 loading

* Refinery still in test runs; full operation set for November (Changes sourcing in lead, adds comments and background)

SINGAPORE/HANOI, Sept 21 (Reuters) - Vietnam’s Nghi Son oil refinery has offered its first gasoline export cargo after receiving approval from the government earlier this month to start exporting fuel products, a source at the refinery told Reuters on Friday.

Vietnam’s second refinery is looking to sell up to 30,000 tonnes of 95-octane grade gasoline for Sept. 26-30 loading through a tender due to be awarded next week, Nghi Son said in a statement on its website.

“We received approval from the Ministry of Industry and Trade a week ago to export our refined fuel products,” said the source, who was not authorised to speak to the media and declined to be named.

“We don’t plan to export our fuel products for the long term, because we will focus on the local market,” said the source.

“In the long term, we will only export our petrochemical products.”

Nghi Son Refinery and Petrochemical LLC, owner of the 200,000 barrel-per-day (bpd) refinery in northern Vietnam, in August asked for government approval to export oil products as domestic traders and consumers were unable to absorb refined fuels from the plant as it ramps up towards commercial operations in November.

Nghi Son is located 260 km (160 miles) south of Hanoi.

The $9 billion refinery is 35.1 percent owned by Japan’s Idemitsu Kosan Co, 35.1 percent by Kuwait Petroleum (IPO-KUWP.KW), 25.1 percent by PetroVietnam and 4.7 percent by Mitsui Chemicals Inc.

The refinery, still conducting test runs, is scheduled to start full commercial operations in November. (Reporting by Seng Li Peng in SINGAPORE and Khanh Vu in HANOI; Editing by James Pearson and Tom Hogue)

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