Indonesia eases Nigeria’s crude sale meltdown, mops up 1.55m barrels


Indonesian refiner, Pertamina, last weekend lightened the crude sale melt down rocking Nigeria at the global market, as it mopped up 1.55m barrels of crude grades from the country.
This came hours after the United States (U.S) took over India market from Nigeria, selling 6 million barrels of crude for November-January delivery.
Nigeria, Africa’s biggest crude exporter, depends largely on proceeds from crude oil sale to service over 85 per cent of its budget.
The country, however, suffered a still-heavy overhang of unsold cargoes, a loading schedule showed. This will mean prices will inevitably have to drop to entice more buying.
Meanwhile, Indonesian refiner, Pertamina booked 950,000-barrel cargoes and one 600,000-barrel cargo of light, sweet crude for delivery between November and December.
Uruguay’s Ancap was also reported to have taken a West African grade at its crude tender last week, traders said.
Indian Oil Corporation, a prospective buyer of Nigeria’s crude, has bought 6 million barrels of U.S. crude for delivery in the November to January period, a company official said, as the nation’s top refiner scouts for alternatives to Iranian oil ahead of impending U.S. sanctions.
This was the company’s first purchase through a mini-term tender to buy U.S. oil, IOC’s Director of Finance A.K. Sharma said.
“Bonny Light was quoted at $1.45-1.55 above dated Brent for August delivery and at $1.65-1.75 for September loading, while Forcados was offered at a premium of $1.55-1.65 to dated Brent for loading this month and for $1.65-1.75 next month,” a report by Reuters, which corroborated the loading schedule, showed.
Both grades have come down from closer to $1.60-1.80 a barrel in the last few days.
Around half a dozen cargoes of Angolan crude were said to be still available from the September loading programme, including new grade Gindungo, which had yet to trade, industry sources said.
Differentials for Nigerian cargoes slid again last weekend, but the decline in prices has helped end a weeks-long deadlock between sellers and buyers and key grades such as Forcados and Bonny Light were seeing a steady flow of trade.
Shell was offering cargoes of Bonny Light as low as $1.10 a barrel above dated Brent for delivery in August, and around $1.20-1.30 for September delivery, down from closer to $1.45-1.65 earlier this week, trading sources said.
Forcados meanwhile, saw fairly brisk business, as P66 and Petroineos took cargoes from Sahara and Vitol. Forcados was offered as high as $1.80 a week ago, but changed hands at $1.35, two traders said.
In the same vein, Nigeria’s rig count for the month of June showed a slight decline of minus one, having recorded 32 as against 33 recorded in May, at a time the 14-member Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC), showed a decline of minus 13.
OPEC rig count in June was 544 as against 557 recorded in May. Leading the OPEC decline was its highest oil producer, the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, which had minus eight, having had a rig count of 139 in June, as against 147 recorded in May.
It was followed by Venezuela, with a minus two rig count, as it recorded 68 as against 70, within the period under review. In the same league with Nigeria of minus one rig count are Gabon and Qatar, while Gabon had three as against four, Qatar had 10 as against 11 within the period under review.
In the same league with Nigeria of minus one rig count are Gabon and Qatar, while Gabon had three as against four, Qatar had 10 as against 11 within the period under review.
Eight countries, Algeria, Angola, Equatorial Guinea, Iran, Iraq, Kuwait, Libya and the United Arab Emirate (UAE), had zero change in their rig count.
They had 50, 4, 1, 61, 60, 54, 1 and 54, respectively. Only one of the OPEC members, Ecuador recorded plus one, as its rig count for the month of June stood at seven as against six recorded in May. World rig count showed an upward move of plus 55, as it recorded 2, 232 in June, as against 2,177 recorded the previous month.
There was also an upward move of plus 67 for non-OPEC rig count, which witnessed 1, 688 in June, while it recorded 1, 621 in May. The United States showed an increase of 11, having deployed 1, 056 rigs in June, as against 1, 045 deployed the previous month, while Canada had plus 53, as it deployed 136 rigs in June as against 83 rigs deployed the month before.
The OECD members witnessed a rig count of plus 65, having recorded 1, 319 as against 1, 254 recorded within the period under review.


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