W. Africa Crude-Majors see Saudi outages boosting light crude

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LONDON, Sept 25 (Reuters) – Energy majors holding cargoes of
Nigerian light crude have yet to bring down prices, anticipating
that outages to the output of comparable Saudi grades following
the Sept. 14 attacks on two of its main plants could still boost
demand.

NIGERIA
* Refining margins continue to be robust and buyer interest
high, but potential customers say current indications are too
high to make justify a sale.
* As the tug-of-war over pricing for prompt-loading cargoes
continues, trading is sluggish and a supply glut of over 20
cargoes from last month lingers, slowing down trades of crude
exporting in November.
* Buyer interest in heavy, sweet Egina oil continues to be
high ahead of marine fuel rules looming for 2020.
* Differentials range from a premium to dated Brent of $5.00
to $5.20, though November programmes had not emerged for most
traders.

ANGOLA
* Saudi Arabia held its spot as China’s largest supplier of
crude in August for the second straight month, official customs
data showed, although this month’s attack on Saudi oil
processing facilities may end the run.
* Heavier crude may enjoy less of a bounce from the Saudi
outages, as that infrastructure was less affected, but less
Iranian imports by Asia stands to boost West African grades.
* Middle distillate margins in Asia remained high amid
physical tightness, but a very wide Brent-Dubai spread
DUB-EFS-1M at $3.60 and steep backwardation hit demand.

TENDERS
* Both India’s IOC and Thailand’s PTT were running tenders
for West African grades set to close late this week, but details
did not emerge.

RELATED NEWS
* Saudi Arabia has restored its oil production capacity to
11.3 million barrels per day, three sources briefed on Saudi
Aramco’s operations told Reuters, maintaining a faster than
expected recovery after the Sept. 14 attacks.
* S&P Global Platts reported the first physical cargo trade
for low-sulphur fuel oil (LSFO) with a maximum 0.5% sulphur
content in Singapore ahead of a sulphur cap by the International
Maritime Organization (IMO) next year.

(Reporting by Noah Browning; editing by David Evansediting by
David Evans)

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