TOKYO, (Reuters) – Saudi Arabia, the world’s top crude exporter, will keep curbs on contracted volumes of crude oil in August largely unchanged from July levels to two north Asian term buyers, industry sources said on Thursday.
State oil firm Saudi Aramco will supply crude at 8 to 9 percent below contracted volumes in August, unchanged from July, to one buyer, while it will cut supplies to a second north Asian term buyer by around 8 percent in August, after curbs of 9-10 percent in July, the sources said.
Two other north Asian term buyers were also notified about allocations, with one refiner that lifts small volumes getting more crude supplies while another refiner, with a larger term contract, said he would receive less for August.
Sources at two other north Asian term buyers said they had yet to be informed about supplies for next month.
The mostly steady volumes to Asia came after several U.S. buyers said on Monday that Saudi Arabia plans to keep oil shipments to the U.S. unchanged in August.
The kingdom has kept supply cuts to Asia largely steady for the last three months, on par with OPEC’s decision to keep production steady at their meeting in May after agreeing to cut 4.2 million barrels per day (bpd) of oil output since last September.
Oil supply from the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries rose in June, as higher output from several members of the group offset cutbacks in Nigeria caused by militant attacks on the oil industry, a Reuters survey showed last week.
Saudi Arabia, which has been cutting supply to Asia since December, was seen pumping 8.02 million bpd in June, up 40,000 bpd from May, but still under its targeted output of 8.05 million bpd.
Two of the sources added that there had been no changes to operational tolerance for August supplies, and the curbs are mainly in the heavier, lower quality grades.