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NEW DELHI: Asia’s naphtha and gasoline margins gained on Wednesday as investors expect limited impact of Omicron coronavirus variant on global economic recovery, even as more countries announce mobility-related curbs due to surging cases.

The naphtha crack rose to $155.65 a tonne, up 92 cents at last close, while the gasoline refining profit margin climbed to $12.29 from $11.66 on Tuesday.

Naphtha cracks could see more upside as the fuel continues to be the preferred cracker feedstock against a costlier liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), Serena Huang, an analyst at the energy consultancy Vortexa, said in a report.

Meanwhile, denting demand sentiment for the transport fuel, the Singapore government said it will freeze all new ticket sales for flights and buses from Dec. 23 to Jan. 20 into the city-state, citing Omicron risks.

Stocks of light distillates at Fujairah Oil Industry Zone, including gasoline and naphtha, increased 1.023 million barrels to 5.228 million barrels in the week ended Dec. 20. US gasoline inventories rose by 3.7 million barrels, compared with a Reuters forecast of build up of about 500,000 barrels.

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