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NEW DELHI: Asia’s very low sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) market gained on Thursday after stocks at Singapore trading hub declined to a four-week low.

The market’s spot cash differential rose to a premium of $8.17 a tonne, compared with a premium of $7.80 a tonne to Singapore quotes a day earlier.

In physical markets, energy trader Mercuria bought 20,000 tonnes of Marine fuel oil, while offers didn’t match bids in the high sulphur fuel oil markets.

The HSFO market traded at steady discounts on Thursday in the absence of deals.

Singapore’s onshore stocks of fuel oil dropped by 522,000 barrels to 20.811 million barrels in the week to Jan. 11, Enterprise Singapore data showed.

Vietnam’s largest refinery, Nghi Son, will be shut down for 55 days starting Aug. 25 for major maintenance, the Ministry of Industry and Trade said on Thursday.

Asian naphtha markets are likely to stay depressed in the first half of 2023 as the region prepares to absorb Russian supplies after Europe’s ban on Moscow’s oil products takes effect on Feb. 5, and demand from the petrochemical sector remains subdued.

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