November 14, 2018 / 4:32 PM / a month ago

W. Africa Crude-Nigerian surplus persists, IOC picks up spot cargoes

LONDON, Nov 14 (Reuters) - A surplus of unsold Nigerian cargoes slowed spot trade to a virtual halt as offer levels were still said to be too high to draw in many buyers, although India’s IOC was said to have snapped up some barrels.

NIGERIA AND ANGOLA

* Almost half of the Nigerian cargoes are left from the December programme, which contained an originally planned 64 cargoes, while a handful remained from the Angolan loading schedule. The January programme was expected to emerge on Thursday or Friday, traders said.

* IOC, which has bought most of its West African crude supplies through tenders in the last few months, was said to have bought at least one cargo on the spot market from Vitol.

* Offers for Qua Iboe and Bonny Light were indicated around $1.75 a barrel above dated Brent, which traders said was too high given the size of the unsold overhang.

RELATED NEWS

* OPEC and its partners are discussing a proposal to cut oil output by 1.4 million barrels per day (bpd), three sources familiar with the issue said, although Russia may not be on board for such a large reduction.

* China will cut imports of West African oil to the lowest in seven months in November due to the higher cost of shipments, while South Korean imports from West Africa will reach an 11-year high as U.S. sanctions hit Iranian crude supplies.

* Nigeria will increase its oil production to 1.8 million barrels per day in 2019 and raise condensate production to 0.5 million bpd, the managing director of Nigerian state oil firm NNPC said on Tuesday.

TENDERS

* Indonesia’s Pertamina is seeking to buy two 600,000-barrel cargoes of light, sweet crude for delivery in January. The size of the cargoes made a West African crude an unlikely option for the refiner.

* Pertamina earlier this week awarded a tender to load Qua Iboe crude on Dec. 1-15 to France’s Total, traders said.

* India’s IOC was said to have awarded a tender to buy crude loading on Jan. 1-15 to Chevron and Glencore, for a co-load of Bonga, Agbami and Okwori. (Reporting by Amanda Cooper; Editing by Jan Harvey) ))

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