November 28, 2018 / 6:46 PM / 21 days ago

Med crude-Urals crude diffs ease in Baltic

MOSCOW, Nov 28 (Reuters) - Urals crude differentials in northwest Europe softened on Wednesday, but may change direction if Russia’s Surgutneftegaz opts to reduce Baltic exports in December to boost supplies to the local market, traders said.

Surgutneftegaz, a big supplier of crude to the Afipsky refinery controlled by New Stream Group, is not announcing new spot tenders to sell December barrels from Baltic Sea ports. Traders speculated that this was because it was waiting to see if New Stream would find money to buy oil.

Afipsky refinery was shut down on November 27 due to a lack of funds to buy oil, industry sources told Reuters.

New Stream’s press service said on Wednesday that the company would have the funds to purchase oil in the near future.

* In the Platts window, Trafigura offered 100,000 tonnes of Urals for loading from Baltic ports on Dec. 18-22 flat to dated Brent, but received no interest.

* The offer level was down by some 25 cents from Urals estimates on Tuesday.

* Total offered 100,000 tonnes of Urals from Primorsk or Ust-Luga for Dec. 8-12 loading at a premium of $0.35 a barrel to dated Brent, but withdrew.

* Urals loadings from Russia’s Black Sea port of Novorossiisk have been suspended since Nov. 27 due to a storm, Reuters sources said.

* President Vladimir Putin said on Wednesday Russia is in touch with OPEC and is ready to continue cooperation with it if needed.

* Putin, speaking at an economic forum, said Russia would be satisfied with an oil price of $60 per barrel, adding that Russia and OPEC had fulfilled their commitments to the global oil output deal. (Reporting by Gleb Gorodyankin; Editing by Kirsten Donovan)

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