Monday, 3 October 2016

Oil rises to $50 as Nigeria's export increases

Global oil benchmark, Brent crude, extended its rally on Sunday to hit the $50 per barrel mark, the third time this year. This comes as the expected return of the Forcados export terminal has helped to boost Nigeria’s planned crude oil exports this month to about 1.98 million barrels per day, the most since January.

Forcados, whose export has been suspended since February after militant attack on the export line, is one of Nigeria’s largest crude grades with an average output of about 200,000 bpd last year.

No tankers have loaded from the terminal so far, according to Bloomberg ship-tracking data. Eight cargoes are scheduled to load this month with another six planned for November.

The recent upsurge in militant attacks in the Niger Delta pushed oil shipments, the nation’s biggest export, to as low as 1.38 million bpd in August from a high of 2.1 million bpd in January.

Oil prices have been on an uptrend since the Organisation of Petroleum Exporting Countries decided to cut output for the first time in eight years.

Brent, against which half of the world’s oil is priced, had risen to around $48 per barrel last Wednesday after OPEC agreed to reduce production, compared to $45 earlier in the day.

It stood at $50.19 per barrel as of 4.53pm Nigerian time on Sunday, up from around $49.66 per barrel on Thursday.

OPEC agreed to cut production to a range of 32.5 million barrels per day to 33 million bpd from around 33.5 million bpd.

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