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SINGAPORE: Asia’s 10-ppm sulphur gasoil margins firmed by almost 15% on week, completely erasing early-week losses, following a rebound in oil futures on Friday.

A lack of trading activity at the close of the week kept a lid on gains, against a backdrop of unchanged demand-supply fundamentals.

Cash differentials for 10 ppm gasoil sulphur rose by around 60% on week to 91 cents per barrel as trader-based buying interest continued. However, offers were minimal and capped discussion momentum.

The market will only see an appreciable tightening when a confluence of factors comes into play – Europe finally drawing down on distillate stocks that are still at one-year highs, the transitioning to summer grade diesel which will see Asian refiners join the fray, said Refinitiv Oil Research.

Likewise, jet fuel refining margins rebounded close to 17% week on week, despite ready supply availability.

Forward month regrade widened further to a discount of $3.55 per barrel, while prompt month regrade widened to a discount of $4.40 per barrel. Both were close to levels seen in December last year.

Gasoil stocks held in independent storage in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) refining and storage area fell for the third week in a row, data from Dutch consultancy Insights Global showed on Thursday.

Gasoil stockpiles are still near a two-year high. Gasoil demand up the river Rhine was healthy and rain helps maintain water levels friendly to barge shipping, said Insights Global’s Lars van Wageningen. France was importing more because of strikes in the refining sector, he added.

Oil prices rose on Friday after a meeting between Saudi Arabia and Russia calmed markets amid strong China demand expectations, but were headed for their biggest weekly falls since December as as a banking crisis rocked global financial and oil markets.

Indian gas firm GAIL (India) Ltd has signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Shell Energy India Private Ltd. to diversify feedstock for its petrochemical plant, the company said on Friday.

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