Aramco less optimistic on output recovery - EntornoInteligente /

New Delhi: Saudi Aramco officials are growing less optimistic about a rapid recovery in oil production after an attack on the giant Abqaiq processing plant on Saturday, a person with knowledge of the matter said. All eyes are on how fast the kingdom can recover from the weekend’s devastating strike, which knocked out roughly 5 per cent of global supply and triggered a record surge in oil prices . Initially, it was said that significant volumes of crude could begin to flow again within days but it may now take longer than previously thought to resume operations at the plant, the person said, asking not be named before an official announcement. Saudi Aramco is firing up idle offshore oil fields – part of their cushion of spare capacity – to replace some of the lost production, they said. The loss of Abqaiq, which handles 5.7 million barrels of oil a day, is the single worst sudden disruption to the oil market. Aramco customers are being supplied using stockpiles, though some buyers are being asked to accept different grades of crude oil. The massive drone strike has global ramifications, particularly for countries in Asia. The region consumes more oil than anywhere else, with China, India, Japan and South Korea among the world’s top buyers. The strike knocked out roughly 5 per cent of the global supply. Oil prices surged the most on record Monday, with Brent crude seeing its biggest gain in dollar terms since futures started trading in 1988. The attack halved Saudi output and is crimping the availability of lighter grades such as Arab Extra Light and Arab Light. Those lesssulfurous grades are already in high demand due to new rules mandating a switch to cleaner shipping fuel. Aramco has told customers it’s likely to replace the lighter grades with heavier oil, said the people, who asked not to be identified as the information is private. A North Asian refiner was notified it may get Arab Medium or Arab Heavy crude cargoes instead of the lighter varieties. Aramco also told some Chinese buyers that volumes won’t be affected but grades may differ.
LINK ORIGINAL: Energy.economictimes.indiatimes

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