Nigeria and other West African crude export to Asia is expected to fall in August as some refineries prepare for maintenance later in the third quarter, coupled with strong competition and disruptions in Nigeria.
A Reuter’s survey of shipping fixtures and traders, showed that disruptions of loading of Nigerian crude may affect exports in the month.
According to traders, the disruptions caused by militant attacks have forced, at least, one cargo to be cancelled. Overall, exports to one of Nigeria’s biggest crude destination, Asia, is said to be hanging in the balance as refinery margins hit five-year lows last month due to a growing excess of refined products. Some refineries were already processing less crude, while others were preparing for maintenance later in the third quarter.
The Reuter’s poll said a total of 55 cargoes, for 1.685m barrels per day(bpd) are booked to sail to Asia this month, 2 percent lower than the planned bookings in July, but more than 8 percent lower than August last year. At the same time, nearly all crude oil sellers were targeting Asia. As a result, some West African oil has been edged out.