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China Oil Titans Plan Joint Crude Buying to Add Market Clout

  • Four state refiners to collectively bid for some oil grades
  • Refiners may conduct trial runs in spot market for Russia ESPO
Industry in Ningbo as China 1Q GDP Drops 6.8%
Photographer: Qilai Shen/Bloomberg
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China’s state-owned oil refining giants are in discussions to form a purchasing group to buy crude together, increasing their bargaining power and avoiding bidding wars.

Senior executives from China Petroleum & Chemical Corp., PetroChina Co., Cnooc Ltd. and Sinochem Group Co. are in advanced talks to iron out details of the plan, said people familiar with the initiative, who asked not to be identified as discussions are private and ongoing. The proposal has won the support of the Chinese central government and relevant industry watchdogs, the people said.