Yemen Raises October Masila Crude Premium: Persian Gulf Oil

Yemen raised the premium it will charge for October shipments of its Masila blend crude to the highest since June, reversing three straight declines in the formula used to set the country’s official oil selling price.

Iran’s Mohsen Qamsari will take over the role of international affairs director at National Iranian Oil Co., replacing Mohammad Ali Khatibi, who is retiring, Tehran Times newspaper reported.

The following is a weekly summary of Persian Gulf crude and product-market news and forthcoming events:

Crude

Yemen raised the premium it will charge for October shipments of its Masila blend crude to $1.16 a barrel more than the Dated Brent benchmark, the state oil marketing committee said Aug. 18. That’s an increase from the 45 cent premium set for September loadings, stemming three straight reductions and bringing the premium to its highest level since June.

Yemen agreed to sell its entire allotment of 2 million barrels of Masila blend crude offered for October to energy trader Arcadia, according to the statement. State-owned Aden Refinery Co. will buy all 1.65 million barrels of Marib Light offered for October at a price flat to Dated Brent.

Iran’s new oil minister Bijan Namdar-Zanganeh said last week he plans to revive the country’s oil production to pre-2005 levels, a time when he also served as oil minister, according to comments to the Fars News agency. Historically the second-largest OPEC producer after Saudi Arabia, Iran has slipped to sixth place as sanctions imposed by the U.S. and its allies against Iran’s nuclear program restricted oil exports.

Zanganeh pledged to return oil production to 4.2 million barrels a day. The current level is 2.56 million barrels, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Iran replaced Khatibi as NIOC’s international affairs head with Qamsari, who had previously held the post of international affairs director at the state-run company, according to reports in Tehran Times on Aug. 21. The Oil Ministry’s news website Shana said on Aug. 20 that Khatibi was retiring.

Neither report said whether Khatibi’s other position as Iran’s governor to the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries would be affected. Khatibi remains Iran’s OPEC governor unless a new appointment is made by Zanganeh, said an official in Khatibi’s office, who declined to be identified.

In regional trading, Oman and Dubai grades both gained for a third week out of four this month, each rising 0.7 percent, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Oman rose 65 cents a barrel to $107.66 a barrel in spot trading in the week ended Aug. 23, while Dubai increased 66 cents to $107.53 a barrel.

Refined Products, Fuel Tenders and Refineries

Kuwait last week offered 74,000 metric tons of naphtha for September loading, according to a tender document obtained by Bloomberg News. State-owned Kuwait Petroleum Co. offered to sell 24,000 tons of Light Naphtha for Sept. 14-15 loading and 50,000 tons of full-range naphtha for Sept. 16-21 loading. The identity of the buyers in the bidding that closed Aug. 20 was not immediately available.

Kuwait National Petroleum Co. last week controlled a fire that broke out at the Mina Abdullah refinery’s crude unit, a company spokesman said Aug. 21. The fire had no impact on exports or production, spokesman Mohammed Al-Ajmi said by phone.

To contact the reporter on this story: Anthony DiPaola in Dubai at adipaola@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Stephen Voss at sev@bloomberg.net

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