Physical trade boost

Crude prices climbed back above 74 $/b at the prompt, confirming that the liquidation experienced last week could be short-lived. Indeed, geopolitical risk in Saudi Arabia may have raised the risk premium in future, as Yemen’s Houthis declared to have fired missiles on Aramco’s assets in Jeddah, where a newly commissioned refinery is located. The impact of the attack is still unclear and have been part of a long series of similar events.

Chinese crude imports rose to 10.17 mb/d in November, up from 8.9 mb/d in October, as the 4th and last batch of import quotas for Chinese independent refiners were issued. Mega refiners such as the ZPC refinery are likely to import significant volumes of heavy sour crude to middle eastern refiners. After the correction in outright crude prices, Angolan crude loading programs are cleared at a much faster rate, with Indian refiners awarding a significant portion of their January tender to Angolan crudes.

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