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SINGAPORE: Asian refining profit margins for 10 ppm gasoil surged to their highest level in nearly two months on Friday, supported by tighter regional supplies due to lower exports from India, China and South Korea.

Despite firmer raw material crude prices, refining margins or cracks for 10 ppm gasoil climbed for a fourth consecutive session to $14.08 a barrel over Dubai crude during Asian trade, their strongest since Nov. 10.

Cracks for the benchmark gasoil grade in Singapore has gained about 10% this week, their first weekly rise in four.

Expectations for a gradual recovery in industrial demand this year, coupled with China’s lower allotment for refined fuel export quotas, were boosting the gasoil market sentiment, traders said.

China’s diesel exports dropped to 220,000 tonnes in December, down from 599,000 tonnes in November, Refinitiv Oil Research assessments showed.

India’s December exports were assessed at 2.4 million tonnes, down from 2.8 million tonnes in the previous month, while South Korea’s exports fell to a near one-year low of 1.7 million tonnes last month, Refinitiv data showed.

Cash premiums for gasoil with 10 ppm sulphur content were at 86 cents per barrel to Singapore quotes on Friday, compared with 94 cents per barrel a day earlier.

Gasoil stocks held independently in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) refining and storage hub rose 1% to 1.8 million tonnes in the week ended Jan. 6, according to Dutch consultancy Insights Global. ARA jet fuel inventories slipped 0.3% this week to 896,000 tonnes.

No jet fuel trades, no gasoil deals. Oil prices rose on Friday as an uprising in Kazakhstan stoked worry that crude supply from the OPEC+ producer could be disrupted at the same time output has dropped in Libya.

The increase in OPEC’s oil output in December has again undershot the rise planned under a deal with allies, a Reuters survey found on Thursday, highlighting capacity constraints that are limiting supply as global demand recovers from the pandemic.

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