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Oil Updates — crude slides more than 1% as Chinese GDP dents demand hopes

Brent crude fell $1.32, or 1.7 percent, to $78.55 a barrel by 11:42 a.m. Saudi time (Shutterstock)
Brent crude fell $1.32, or 1.7 percent, to $78.55 a barrel by 11:42 a.m. Saudi time (Shutterstock)
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17 Jul 2023 09:07:22 GMT9
17 Jul 2023 09:07:22 GMT9

Arab News

RIYADH: Oil dropped by more than 1 percent on Monday after weaker than expected Chinese economic growth fueled concern over demand in the world’s second-biggest oil consumer.

China’s gross domestic product grew 6.3 percent year on year in the second quarter, compared with analyst forecasts of 7.3 percent, with its post-pandemic recovery faltering rapidly owing to weakening demand at home and abroad. 

Brent crude fell $1.32, or 1.7 percent, to $78.55 a barrel by 11:42 a.m. Saudi time, while US West Texas Intermediate crude dropped by $1.22, or 1.6 percent, to $74.20 on a second straight day of losses for both contracts. 

Both benchmarks had notched three weeks of gains and touched their highest since April last week, finding support from output curbs of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and its allies, known as OPEC+, and unplanned outages in Libya and Nigeria. 

Russia on track to fulfilling August oil export cut 

Russia is set on meeting its plan to cut oil exports in August by 500,000 barrels per day, the Kommersant newspaper reported on Monday. 

The newspaper said Russia’s oil exports by sea may fall to 2.9-3 million bpd in August, mainly due to export cuts at the country’s Baltic ports. 

The reductions were made by adjusting the third quarter export schedule of state-owned pipeline operator Transneft, Kommersant reported.  

Russia announced the planned cuts earlier this month, as it looked to nudge up global oil prices in concert with Saudi Arabia. 

China’s daily oil throughput rises in June 

China’s daily oil refinery throughput in June rose 1.6 percent from a month ago, official data showed on Monday, as refiners resumed operations after completing spring maintenance and ramped up production to meet summer travel demand. 

Total refinery throughput in the world’s second-largest oil consumer was 60.95 million tons last month, equivalent to 14.83 million bpd, data from the National Bureau of Statistics showed. 

June’s figures represent a marginal increase on the 14.6 million bpd rate seen in the prior month, although they surged by 10.2 percent from a low base in the same period last year. 

For the first half of 2023, China processed a total of 363.6 million tons of crude oil, or 14.66 million bpd, up 9.9 percent year on year, according to the data. 

June saw the completion of almost all planned refinery maintenance for the spring season. Only four major state-backed refineries are undergoing or will shut down for overhauls in July and August. 

NBS data also showed China’s crude oil production in June was 17.52 million tons, or about 4.26 million bpd, versus 17.2 million tons in the same month of 2022. 

For the first six months of 2023, China’s oil output reached 105.05 million tons, the highest level since 2015. 

Natural gas production was up 5.5 percent to 18.3 billion cubic meters from the year-ago period’s 17.3 bcm. 

(With input from Reuters) 

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