September 25, 2018 / 3:49 PM / 21 days ago

W. Africa Crude-Angolan cargoes see brisk Chinese demand; Nigerian supply rising

LONDON, Sept 25 (Reuters) - Differentials for Angolan crude have risen this week after a flurry of buying from Chinese refineries absorbed more than half of the November loading programme.

Independent refiners in China’s Shandong province imported 42.4 million tonnes of crude in the first half of 2018, 41.4 percent higher than a year earlier, a senior refinery executive said on Tuesday.

NIGERIA AND ANGOLA

* Demand from Chinese refiners for Angolan crude has been robust this month. Only around 40 percent of the 46 cargoes in the November programme are still available for sale, traders said.

* Traders said offers for November-loading Girassol were around $1.40-1.45 a barrel above the dated Brent price, compared with recent indications of closer to 70 cents a barrel, while Cabinda has been offered at a premium of $1.00 a barrel above dated Brent, up from closer to 50 cents recently.

* BP was bidding for early-October loading cargoes of Qua Iboe, Bonny Light and Bonga at premiums of between $1.40 and $1.60 a barrel above dated Brent, compared with indications of $1.60-1.65 on Monday, traders said.

* Trading house Mercuria was offering a cargo of October loading Forcados as high as $2.00 a barrel above the dated price, up from around $1.70 on Monday. Even after cutting the offer to $1.75, no buyers surfaced.

* Only a few of the smaller Nigerian loading programmes, such as Brass River, Ebok and Oyo had not yet emerged. So far, exports look likely to top 1.9 million bpd in November, which would be the largest loading programme since May’s 1.895 million bpd schedule.

RELATED NEWS

* Royal Dutch Shell wants to reweight its footprint in Nigeria to focus on oil and gas fields far offshore, away from the theft, spills, corruption and unrest that have plagued the West African country’s onshore industry for decades. But for the company that pioneered Nigeria’s oil industry in the 1950s, the Niger Delta remains as important — and problematic — as ever.

* India will continue to depend on oil as a mainstay of its energy but its oil demand growth will likely slow as the government pushes for cleaner energy and renewables, Harish Mehta, President, Refining & Marketing at Reliance Industries RELI.NS, said on Tuesday.

TENDERS

* Uruguay’s state-run oil firm ANCAP has launched a tender to buy a 1-million-barrel cargo of a medium to light crude for delivery Nov. 23-27 at Jose Ignacio port. The crude must contain up to 1.5 percent of sulfur. Bids, indexed to Brent crude front month prices, will be accepted through Sep. 26. (Reporting by Amanda Cooper; Editing by Ed Osmond) ))

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