LONDON: The outlook for Nigerian oil has brightened as interest from Asian refiners has risen on favourable margins and new marine fuel rules.
* Nigerian oil seldom flows as far as East Asia but is receiving a boost as buyers seek alternatives to heavier oils from the Middle East and elsewhere in West Africa.
* For some refineries, traders said, certain types of Nigerian oil are now sought for refining into low-sulphur fuel oil.
* More light sweet oil than usual has also been exported to East Asia as Chinese gasoline exports surge.
* Barrels from the relatively new Egina offshore field were being offered around an all-time high of $5 above dated Brent.
* Heavy and sweet, Egina has performed increasingly well as IMO 2020 shipping rules loom.
* Nigerian Bonny Light was still being offered at a nearly $3 premium compared with dated Brent – relatively high considering especially steep competition from US and North Sea grades this month.
* Similar Angolan and Congolese grades are being marked down to find buyers, with remaining barrels discounted about 10-20 cents daily.
* Between 5 and 10 cargoes of Angolan oil remain available for export in October, as November programmes are expected early next week.