INDIA BUYS U.S. OIL
REUTERS - India, the world's third-largest oil importer, will import crude oil from the United States for the first time after Indian Oil Corp bought a cargo that will be delivered in October.
The purchase comes after Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi's visit to the U.S. in June when President Donald Trump said his country looked forward to exporting more energy products to India.
IOC bought 1.6 million barrels of U.S. Mars crude, a heavy, high-sulfur grade, and 400,000 barrels of Western Canadian Select that will be delivered onboard a Very Large Crude Carrier, IOC's head of finance, A.K. Sharma, told Reuters.
PetroChina was awarded the tender to sell the cargoes and is expected to load the oil off the U.S. Gulf Coast, said a trading source with direct knowledge of the sale.
The cargo was priced on a delivered ex-ship basis, which is "very competitive" to that of Basra Light, Sharma said.
"So long as the prices remain competitive, we will buy more of the U.S. crude," he said.
IOC had to obtain special permission from the shipping ministry to buy the cargo on a delivered basis as local regulations favor the use of Indian flagged carriers for imports, Sharma said.
India is the latest Asian country to buy U.S. crude after South Korea, Japan, China, Thailand, Australia and Taiwan as the countries seek to diversify oil imports from other regions after the OPEC cuts drove up prices of Middle East heavy-sour crude, or grades with a high sulfur content.
Indian refiners are seeking these heavy, high-sulfur grades as feedstocks after modifications at their plants make it easier to process these types of crudes, which typically sell at a lower cost relative to other oil types. The U.S. could become an alternative source for the Indian companies for these grades.
A second Indian refiner Bharat Petroleum Corp Ltd also planned to buy its first ever U.S. crude oil cargo and has issued a purchase tender.
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Brent crude futures LCOc1 were at $51.02 per barrel at 0218 GMT, up 22 cents or 0.4 percent from their last close. U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures CLc1 were at $47.70 a barrel, up 15 cents, or 0.3 percent.
New data suggests that in 2Q17 global stocks fell by 0.5 mb/d and preliminary data for July, particularly in the United States where stocks fell by 790 kb/d, is supportive. Even so, we must not forget that they are falling from a very great height in volume terms. At the end of 2Q17, OECD commercial stocks, which are the component of the global total for which we have the most visibility, stood at 3 021 million barrels, still more than 219 mb above the five-year average although they have now fallen below 2016 levels. As an exercise, if OECD stocks fell by 0.5 mb/d until the end of 1Q18 when the current output agreements expire they would still be about 60 mb above the five-year average.
Средняя цена нефти марки Urals по итогам января - июля 2017 года составила $ 49,94 за баррель.
OPEC said world oil demand in 2018 will grow 1.28 million b/d from 2017 levels, meaning that total oil consumption is expected to hit a new record high of 97.8 million b/d in 2018.