June 25, 2020 / 3:51 PM / 2 months ago

W. Africa Crude-European gasoline margins boost hope for Nigerian exports

LONDON, June 25 (Reuters) - A sharp improvement to European gasoline cracks could soon lead to an uptick in demand for Nigerian crude, traders said, but differentials remained steady on high storage and mostly bad margins.

* Increased mobility helped send European gasoline cracks higher and provided a boost to sellers of Nigerian oil.

* Still, sold prices for lighter Nigerian crude grades Qua Iboe and Bonny Light have yet to exceed around dated Brent plus a dollar in recent days, as European gasoline stocks have slipped but remain near all-time highs.

* Raised official selling prices by about $1.30 for these grades in July compared to June are realistic, according to one trader, though the destocking in Europe may take a while before new demand can kick in.

* A tender from Taiwan’s CPC for sweet crude was likely awarded to a shipment of WTI Midland oil and not West African, but traders awaited results for Thai oil refiner IRPC which also issued a tender for sweet crude valid until Wednesday.

RELATED NEWS

* U.S. petroleum refiners are dealing with the problem of excess fuel stocks by only slowly ramping up their crude processing, even as lockdowns are eased and fuel consumption recovers.

* The Belgian port of Antwerp has quarantined a Maltese-flagged oil tanker until at least July 4 after more than half of its crew tested positive for COVID-19, the port authority said on Thursday. (Reporting by Noah Browning; Editing by Shailesh Kuber) ))))

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