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Rang Dong Premium Drops; Kutubu Exports to Resume: Asia Crude

Vietnam’s Rang Dong crude for October traded at lower premiums than earlier deals. Exports of Papua New Guinea’s Kutubu crude may start next week after stopping late July.

PV Oil Co., Vietnam’s state-owned oil marketing company, sold 200,000 barrels of Rang Dong for October. Premiums ranged from parity to $1 a barrel over benchmark dated Brent, said three people who participate in the market, asking not to be identified because the information is confidential.

The levels paid for this cargo were lower than the most recent deals. The company signed six-month contracts to sell the grade from October to March at premiums of $2.50 to $2.60 a barrel earlier this month, three people said Aug. 13.

PV Oil offered to sell 400,000 barrels each of Bunga Kekwa and Bunga Orkid crude for October loading, according to a tender document obtained by Bloomberg News. Bids are due Aug. 23.

Oil Search Ltd. may start exporting Kutubu Blend crude as early as next week from Papua New Guinea after finding no leaks in its offshore loading terminal.

Testing at the Kumul Marine Terminal has “found no source of any leak in the oil export system,” and inspections will continue over the next few days, according to a release today. Oil Search shut the terminal when droplets, totaling an estimated 1 barrel of crude, were seen on the sea surface, according to a July 26 statement.

“Should this work confirm present conclusions, Oil Search expects to return to normal operations early next week,” the company said.

Oil Search’s Papua New Guinea operation was producing about 30,000 barrels a day and typically exporting two cargoes a month before the incident, Ann Diamant, the investor-relations manager, said in a phone interview Aug. 14.

SK and Iran

SK Innovation Co., South Korea’s biggest oil refiner, will resume importing Iranian crude in September. It is set to conclude talks to use the Persian Gulf nation’s tankers, Yoo Jung Min, a spokesman at the Seoul-based company, said by phone today. The first shipment is expected in September.

Qatar International Petroleum Marketing Co., known as Tasweeq, sold six cargoes of Al-Shaheen crude for loading in October at premiums of $1.10 to $1.40 a barrel to benchmark Dubai crude, said three people who participate in the market, asking not to be identified because they aren’t authorized to speak to the media. Buyers included Exxon Mobil Corp., Chevron Corp. and Reliance Industries Ltd, two of the people said.

The October Brent-Dubai exchange for swaps, which measures the European oil’s premium to the Mideast marker, tumbled $1.35 to $4.05 a barrel, according to data from PVM Oil Associates Ltd., a London-based broker. The November EFS fell 44 cents to $3.74.

Refining Profits

Profits from refining a barrel of benchmark Dubai crude into fuels such as diesel and gasoline priced in the regional trading hub of Singapore averaged $6.46 during the last five days, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The 30-day average is $5.53, the highest since March.

Dubai crude’s backwardation, when the price for near-term deliveries is greater than later supplies, fell 3 cents. Spot prices were 90 cents a barrel more than October levels, according to data from PVM.

Oman oil for October rose dropped 11 cents to settle at $111.60 a barrel at 12:30 p.m. on the Dubai Mercantile Exchange.

Trafigura Beheer BV bought all three Dubai partial cargoes sold today, according to a survey of people who monitor the Platts pricing window. The trader bought two of the 25,000 barrel lots from Phibro LLC at $111.05 and $111.15 a barrel, and one from SK Innovation at $111.05.

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