Russia’s Aug ESPO Blend crude exports rise 4% on month to 2.7 mil mt
Russia’s exports of the medium sweet ESPO Blend crude in August are expected to total 2.7 million mt, up 3.85% from July, the latest monthly loading program showed.
ESPO Blend’s August program runs from July 30 to September 1 and will comprise 27 cargoes of 100,000 mt each, according to the program.
This was similar to the June-loading program, which runs from June 30 to August 1.
However, the August-loading rate will average 582,088 b/d, up from 577,515 b/d scheduled for July.
The program showed that state-owned Rosneft holds ten cargoes for August, up from eight in July
Surgutneftegaz holds eight cargoes for August similar to their allocation for the July-loading program.
Small producers including Swiss-based Tenergy will hold a total of six cargoes, unchanged from the previous month, while Gazpromneft and Lukoil will hold two cargoes and one cargo, respectively, for August, the program showed.
The August-loading cargoes were heard sold at premiums of around $2.50-$2.70/b to Platts front-month Dubai crude assessments. This compares to premiums of around $3.20-$3.40/b for loading over H1 July, and around $2.50-$2.70/b for loading over H2 July.
Market sources noted that weak demand from China was the main reason why premiums have dropped from H2 July.
“Still some August barrels floating around for ESPO, ” a China-based trading source said.
“Not much improvement on demand from China either, keeping the premiums at $2.50-$2.70/b, ” the source added.