January 12, 2018 / 4:59 PM / in 5 months

W. Africa Crude-Sonangol sells out, IOC opts for some U.S. oil

LONDON, Jan 12 (Reuters) - Angola’s Sonangol sold its last three February-loading cargoes, while results from Indian tenders showed IOC and BPCL opting for some non-West African oil grades.

ANGOLA

* State oil company Sonangol had sold Saturno and two Dalia cargoes that remained from its February export plan.

* China’s Unipec bought the Saturno, an end-month loader, while one cargo of Dalia will sail to India and the other to China, a trader said.

* It had offered the Dalia at dated minus 45 cents, down from 30 cents, and the Saturno at dated minus 55 cents, down from 40 cents.

* The March loading programmes are due early next week, but there are still a variety of cargoes available from other sellers for January and February loading.

NIGERIA

* Spot trade remained limited as the market digested the latest tender awards from Indian refineries.

* While IOC purchased two Nigerian oil cargoes - an Okwuibome and an Escravos, the decision by IOC and BPCL to take grades outside of West Africa could put downward pressure on differentials.

* A range of cargoes from the January and February programmes were on offer, with the March loading plans due over the coming week. This could put further downward pressure on differentials versus dated Brent.

* Nigeria’s Ministry of Petroleum said its crude and condensate production stood at 2.06 million barrels per day (bpd) in December, compared with 2.04 million bpd in November.

TENDERS

* Glencore will supply India’s IOC with Nigeria’s Escravos and Okwuibome, traders said.

* Trafigura won the right to supply the second VLCC with U.S. Louisiana Light Sweet rather than a West African grade.

* Traders said the company could have awarded one additional cargo, also not of West African origin.

* India’s BPCL had awarded its tender to Socar, traders said, which will supply Azerbaijani Azeri crude.

* A trader said that Total had won a tender from Uruguay’s Ancap to buy West African crude for March 6-10 delivery, but confirmation and further details were unavailable.

* There was no word yet on the results from a tender from Indonesia’s Pertamina, which was expected on Friday.

RELATED NEWS

* Oil prices eased on Friday after hitting a three-year high of more than $70 a barrel the previous day, but they remained on track to post a fourth straight week of gains.

* China’s commodities buying spree eased slightly in December, with crude oil imports falling 12 percent from the month earlier, the latest sign that Beijing’s anti-smog crackdown is slowing industrial activity.

* Russia should start exiting a global deal to cut oil output if crude prices remain at $70 per barrel for more than six months, Lukoil chief executive Vagit Alekperov said on Friday as he unveiled a $2-3 billion share buyback programme. (Reporting By Libby George; Editing by Elaine Hardcastle) ))

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