Shell Buys Forties Crude; CPC November Exports at 8-Month Low

Oct. 11 (Bloomberg) --Royal Dutch Shell Plc (RDSA) bought a cargo of North Sea Forties crude at a bigger premium than yesterday. Statoil ASA (STL) failed to sell Oseberg and Ekofisk grades. Workers at the Grangemouth refinery voted to strike, a move that may close the Forties Pipeline System.

Shell declared force majeure on Bonny Light exports yesterday after shutting its Trans Niger oil pipeline in Nigeria for the fifth time in three months because of leaks caused by thieves. The Caspian Pipeline Consortium will cut November shipments to the least in eight months, even with the inclusion of a cargo from the Kashagan field, a preliminary loading program obtained by Bloomberg News showed.

North Sea

Shell bought Forties for loading Nov. 3 to Nov. 5 from BP Plc (BP/) at 30 cents a barrel more than Dated Brent, according to a Bloomberg survey of traders and brokers monitoring the Platts pricing window. That compares with a trade at a 15-cent premium yesterday.

BP failed to sell a second cargo of Forties for Oct. 24 to Oct. 26 at 24 cents a barrel less than Dated Brent, while Total SA (FP) didn’t find a buyer for the grade loading Oct. 22 to Oct. 24 at a discount of 15 cents, the survey showed.

Statoil didn’t manage to sell one Oseberg cargo for Oct. 31 to Nov. 2 at $1.60 a barrel more than Dated Brent, and another shipment of the grade for Nov. 3 to Nov. 5 at a premium of $1.90, according to the survey. These are the first offers since June 21.

Statoil was unable to sell Ekofisk for Oct. 28 to Oct. 30 at $1.30 a barrel more than Dated Brent, 30 cents less than its offer yesterday, the survey showed.

Brent for November settlement traded at $110.67 a barrel on the ICE Futures Europe exchange at the close of the window, compared with $111.41 from the previous session. The December contract was at $109.88, a discount of 79 cents to November.

U.K.’s Unite union served a seven days notice of 48-hour strike planned at Grangegmouth refinery on Oct. 20 at 7 a.m. local time, the union said in an e-mailed statement. The plant powers the Forties Pipeline System to which over 80 offshore oil fields are connected.

A very large crude carrier left the Forties loading terminal Hound Point in Scotland for South Korea yesterday, the first tanker to ply this route in four months, ship-tracking data from Bloomberg show.

The Artemis Glory was booked by Shell for $4.4 million, according to reports from Poten & Partners and Optima Shipbrokers Ltd. The shipment is the first to make the voyage since the Maersk Sandra set sail on June 7, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

Urals/Mediterranean

There were no bids or offers for Urals on the Platts window for a second day. The grade traded on Oct. 8 at a discount of 90 cents a barrel delivered to Augusta, Italy.

CPC, operator of the only oil-export link in Russia that has shared foreign ownership, will ship 2.56 million metric tons in November compared with 2.95 million tons in October, the schedule showed. That’s equal to 663,170 barrels a day, the least since March, and is down 10.4 percent from this month.

The CPC program comprises 10 cargoes of 134,000 to 135,500 tons each and 14 consignments of 80,000 to 93,500 tons, according to the plan.

Exxon Mobil Corp. will load 85,000 tons of Kashagan crude on Nov. 29, the first shipment from the $48 billion oil project in Kazakhstan that was delayed by eight years. Exxon was originally allocated one cargo from the field in October, which was removed from the final loading program.

ONGC Videsh Ltd. offered 600,000 barrels of Azeri Light for Nov. 18 to Nov. 20 loading from Turkey’s port of Ceyhan, according to a tender document obtained by Bloomberg News today. Bids are due 2:30 p.m. India time on Oct. 18, and will stay valid until 6:30 p.m. the same day.

Saudi Arabian Oil Co. will supply full volume in November to customers in Europe, unchanged from this month, according to two refinery officials with knowledge of the matter.

West Africa

Shell lost about 300,000 barrels a day of crude from the closing of the Trans Niger Pipeline and Nembe Creek Trunkline, the company’s Nigerian unit said in an e-mailed statement today. Force majeure, a legal clause excusing a company from meeting its commitments because of events beyond its control, was declared at noon local time yesterday, Shell said.

The entire TNP system, comprising the 24-inch and 28-inch pipelines, was closed at least five times since early July due to multiple leaks from theft connections, the company said. A total of 189 breaches have been repaired on the two links from January to September this year, according to the statement.

PT Pertamina bought at least 1 million barrels of Nigerian Qua Iboe for delivery in December via a tender, according to three traders who participate in the market, asking not to be identified because the information is confidential. The company bought two cargoes, one of them said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Sherry Su in London at lsu23@bloomberg.net

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

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