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Last Trade - 18/05/21

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Market Cap £3.63bn
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RPT-UPDATE 1-Indian Oil Corp buys its first Johan Sverdrup crude cargoes - sources

Tue 6th April, 2021 1:03am
(Repeats story published on Monday with no changes to text)
    By Shu Zhang and Nidhi Verma
    SINGAPORE/NEW DELHI, April 5 (Reuters) - State-run refiner
Indian Oil Corporation (IOC)  IOC.NS  has made its first
purchase of Norway's Johan Sverdrup crude, buying four million
barrels via a tender as it speeds up diversification of crude
imports, two trade sources told Reuters on Monday. 
    IOC will take delivery of two million barrels of the North
Sea crude in each of May and June, one of the sources said.
Further details on the trades were not yet clear.
    The move follows the Indian government's call to cut
dependence on crude from the Middle East in an escalating
stand-off between India, the world's third-largest crude
importer, and Saudi Arabia, the de-facto leader of the
Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC). 
    India complains that long-running OPEC production cuts have
created uncertainty for customers and led to a surge in prices,
creating fiscal challenges for a country where heavily-taxed
retail fuel prices recently touched record highs, threatening an
economic recovery.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL4N2JU3E6  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL2N2L206C  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2LV07I
    Indian state refiners - top refiner IOC, Bharat Petroleum
Corp  BPCL.NS , Hindustan Petroleum Corp  HPCL.NS  and Mangalore
Refinery and Petrochemicals Ltd  MRPL.NS  - are planning to cut
oil imports from Saudi Arabia by about a quarter in May, Reuters
reported in March.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2LF01Q
    Oil from Johan Sverdrup, the largest North Sea discovery in
more than three decades, started to flow to Asia's top oil
importers in late 2019, with India's Reliance Industries Ltd
 RELI.NS  among its first takers. 
    While the grade has gained popularity among Chinese
independent refineries, it has rarely been supplied to India,
trade flows data on Refinitiv Eikon show.
    India last discharged a 1-million-barrel cargo of Johan
Sverdrup crude in September 2020, the data show.
    Chinese refiners have slowed crude purchases in the spot
market amid seasonal refinery maintenance and a large influx of
Iranian oil, pressuring global oil sellers.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2LN10M
    Indian refiners, meanwhile, are looking at crude from the
United States, West Africa, South America and the Mediterranean
as alternative options as they diversify away from Middle
Eastern oil, trade sources say. 
    Last month, HPCL-Mittal Energy loaded India's first cargo of
Guyana's Liza light sweet crude.  urn:newsml:reuters.com:*:nL1N2LM004
    Another state refiner, BPCL, bought three million barrels of
U.S. light sweet grades, including West Texas Intermediate
Midland and Eagle Ford, for arrival in May, a trade source said.

 (Reporting by Shu Zhang in Singapore and Nidhi Verma in New
Delhi. Editing by Alison Williams and Mark Potter)
 ((shu.zhang@thomsonreuters.com; +65-6870-3549; Reuters
Messaging: Twitter @shuzhang4))
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