Middle East Crude-Benchmarks mixed; China slashes second batch of import quotas

Middle East crude benchmarks Oman and Dubai were mixed on Monday


SINGAPORE- Middle East crude benchmarks Oman and Dubai were mixed on Monday.

Brent crude's premium to Dubai quotes climbed further to $3.97 a barrel at Singapore market's close, the highest since Sept. 17, 2019, Refinitiv Eikon data showed. 

China has issued 35.24 million tonnes of crude oil import quotas to non-state refiners in a second batch of allowances for 2021, a 35% drop from the same slot last year. 

The sharp decline comes after a recent crackdown on trading of such quotas as Beijing works to consolidate its bloated refining industry and reduce emissions.

Analysts expect the quota cut to affect independent refiners' appetite for crude imports and their refinery utilisation rates in the second half of the year.


Malaysia's state oil firm Petronas has set the monthly price factors for July-loading crude. 


Eneos Corp, Japan's biggest refiner, shut the 145,000 barrels-per-day (bpd) crude distillation unit (CDU) at its Sendai refinery in northern Japan on June 7 for scheduled turnaround, a company spokesman said on Monday. 

Japanese oil refiner Idemitsu Kosan Co has restarted the 190,000 barrel per day (bpd) crude distillation unit (CDU) at its Chiba refinery, east of Tokyo, on June 6 after completing regular maintenance, a company spokesman said on Monday. 


Iran could quickly export millions of barrels of oil it is holding in storage if it reaches a deal with the United States on its nuclear programme and has been moving oil into place to prepare for an eventual restart, four traders and industrial sources said. 

China's imports from Saudi Arabia fell 21% in May from a year earlier but retained their top ranking among suppliers for a ninth month in a row, customs data showed on Sunday. 

China's first energy options open to foreign traders made their Shanghai International Energy Exchange (INE) debut on Monday with the new crude oil contract achieving only muted volumes. 

BofA Global Research raised its Brent crude price forecasts for this year and next, saying that tighter oil supply and demand balances in 2022 could push oil briefly to $100 per barrel.

(Reporting By Shu Zhang; Editing by Rashmi Aich) ((shu.zhang@thomsonreuters.com; +65-6870-3549; Reuters Messaging: Twitter @shuzhang4))

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