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SINGAPORE: Asia’s cash premiums for 0.5% very low-sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) climbed on Friday, riding on firmer deals in the physical market, but posted their biggest weekly decline since late January.

Cash differentials for Asia’s 0.5% VLSFO rose to a premium of $19.59 a tonne to Singapore quotes, up from $18.10 per tonne on Thursday. The premiums, however, have shed about 25% this week. The front-month VLSFO crack rose to a two-week high of $22.76 per barrel against Dubai crude during Asian trading hours, buoyed by expectations for tight regional supplies in the near term.

The crack was at $21.72 per barrel on Thursday, and has gained about 5% this week, Refinitiv Eikon data showed.

Cash premiums for 380-cst high sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) dipped to a premium of $6.01 per tonne to Singapore quotes, while cash differentials for 180-cst HSFO fell to a premium of $14.98 per tonne to Singapore quotes.

The front-month barge crack for 380-cst HSFO traded at a discount of $14.38 a barrel to Brent on Friday, compared with minus $13.77 a barrel in the previous session.

Fuel oil stocks held independently in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) refining and storage hub dropped 4.6% to 1.03 million tonnes in the week ended May 12, data from Dutch consultancy Insights Global showed.

This comes after Singapore’s onshore fuel oil stocks fell 15% to 17.5 million barrels, or about 2.6 million tonnes, in the week ended May 11, the lowest level since July 2019, according to the Enterprise Singapore data.

ARA gasoil stocks rose 0.8% to 1.6 million tonnes this week.

One 180-cst high-sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) deal, no 380-cst HSFO trades. Two VLSFO trades were reported. OPEC cut its growth forecast for world oil demand in 2022 for a second straight month, citing the impact of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, rapid inflation and the resurgence of the Omicron coronavirus variant in China. Oil prices rose around 1.5% on Friday, but were headed for their first weekly loss in three weeks as worries about inflation and China’s COVID lockdowns slowing global growth offset concerns about dwindling fuel supplies from Russia.

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