Saudi cuts Jan Extra Light crude supply to Asia

The move comes after Saudi Arabia increased crude loadings to Asia in the last two months of the year to meet robust demand

Picture for illustrative purpose only.
Picture for illustrative purpose only.

Saudi Arabia, the world's top crude exporter, has cut the supply of January-loading Arab Extra Light crude to some buyers in Asia and replaced it with Arab Light, industry sources told Reuters last week.

The move comes after Saudi Arabia increased crude loadings to Asia in the last two months of the year to meet robust demand.

The change in crude type will not affect Saudi Arabia's overall contractual volumes to Asia. State-run Saudi Aramco will supply full contracted volumes of crude in January, the sources said.

"(Refining) margins are still good so demand will be steady," said a trader with a North Asian refiner.

The cut in Arab Extra Light crude supply follows a drop in light crude and condensate exports from fellow OPEC producers, the United Arab Emirates and Qatar, curbing supply of naphtha-rich feedstock for Asian refiners.

The Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) has cut term supplies of Murban and Das crude by about 10% for January, while Qatar did not offer low-sulphur condensate for the first two months of 2016.

Tighter supply of Middle East light crude in Asia has pushed spot premiums for February-loading cargoes to multi-month highs.

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