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Demand for MEA crude carriers hits record

Steel News - Published on Thu, 24 Mar 2011

Reuters reported that demand for Very Large Crude Carriers shipping Middle East grades surged to a record in the spot market with more than 115 fixtures in March as OPEC pumped more supplies.

Shipbrokers said that with oil prices trading near USD 115 per barrel oil producers have ramped up production to an all time high of 89 million barrels per day in February.

OPEC pumped 30.02 million barrels per day in February up 110,000 barrels per day from the previous month due to extra supplies from Saudi Arabia.

Shipbroker BRS said that March has been a record month in terms of demand for VLCC tonnage in the Middle East Gulf. As many as 120 VLCCs had been booked in March.

Shipbroker firm Meiwa International said that at least 97 of the cargoes were Asia-bound, with the rest going to the West. Activity in the VLCC spot market has surged in the last 4 months with fixtures averaging around 111 per month.

The unprecedented activity in the market however has not translated into higher freight rates. The benchmark VLCC export route from the Middle East Gulf to Japan has tumbled 23% in the last month as a flood of new tankers more than offsets the increase in oil supplies. The market has also come under pressure from weakening Japanese crude demand following the devastating earthquake.

(Sourced from Reuters)

Posted By : admin on Thu, 24 Mar 2011
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