W. Africa Crude-Nigerian, Angolan diffs slide but cargoes struggle to find buyers


LONDON, June 11 – Nigerian and Angolan differentials have continued to slide against a backdrop of poor refining margins in Europe and Asia, but still sold slowly.

* As many as 10 cargoes of Angolan crude continue to remain for July loading.

* Unipec was heard not to have sold two cargoes of Angolan crude it had, unusually, offered for sale on the Platts window.

* Its cargo of Mostarda, the new high-sulphur stream, had been marked down to a premium of 20 cents above dated Brent, down a dollar from price offerings for the grade at the beginning of the month.

* China’s West African crude imports fell by about 300,000 bpd in May compared to April in part due to the widening Brent-Dubai spread, according to Energy consultancy FGE.

* Profit margins for making petroleum feedstock naphtha have hit their weakest in over a decade in Asia and a seven-year low in Europe

* A downturn in margins in northwest Europe and an even sharper slide in the Mediterranean along with steep backwardation has hurt demand for West African crude.

* Price offerings for Nigerian cargoes have fallen sharply, with early-month offering for Bonny Light at around dated Brent plus $4.00 having dropped to around $2.50.

* A Suezmax vessel chartered by Philadelphia Energy Solutions was due to discharge Nigerian Agbami crude on the U.S. East coast in mid-July.

* Indonesia’s Pertamina is running a tender for southeast Asian, Australian and Nigerian grades for delivery Aug. 9-11, set to close on Tuesday.

* Angola plans to launch a renewable energy auction that could help reduce reliance on oil, after one of its worst fuel shortages in May, energy secretary Antonio Costa said on Tuesday.

* Senegal’s justice ministry asked prosecutors on Monday to launch an inquiry into the country’s energy contracts after a report alleged that the president’s brother was involved in fraud related to two offshore gas blocks being developed by BP.

* Cameroon’s 42,000-barrel-per-day Sonara oil refinery will be shut for a year following a fire earlier this month, the ministry of commerce told Reuters on Tuesday.

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