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SINGAPORE: Asia’s high sulphur fuel oil market was little changed on Wednesday with cash differentials steadying, while residual stocks at the UAE’s key trading hub Fujairah climbed 2% week-on-week.

The 180-cst HSFO cash differential inched 2 cents higher to a premium of $1.51 per tonne to Singapore quotes, while the 380-cst HSFO cash differential gained 17 cents to a discount of 41 cents per tonne on Wednesday.

The market has been fluctuating in a narrow range as average bunkering demand for the grade balanced out the slightly lower supplies from the Middle East to Asia this month. Singapore ex-wharf 380-cst bunker fuel premiums have been largely stuck in single-digit premiums to cargo quotes for the bulk of October, traders said.

In contrast, the cash differential for very low sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) eased further for a fourth straight session on Wednesday as projections of more supply weighed.

Apart from an uptick in arbitrage low-sulphur arrivals from the West, China’s September fuel oil output rose 5.6% year-on-year to 4.58 million tonnes, customs data showed.

The country’s exports of very-low-sulphur marine fuel rose 30.5% year-on-year to 1.9 million tonnes in September, data this week showed.

Residual fuel oil stocks at Fujairah rose 2% to 13.40 million barrels (1.94 million tonnes) in the week ended Oct. 24, data from the Fujairah Oil Industry Zone showed.

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