Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (Adnoc) raised the retroactive prices of crude sold to Asia in April, after robust demand pushed up spot premiums for its grades.

Prices were also boosted by a cut in supply of flagship Murban crude to Asia as Adnoc diverts oil to feed a new domestic refinery.

Adnoc set the April retroactive selling price of its benchmark Murban crude at $60.55 a barrel, up $4.45 from the previous month, the company said.

The April Murban OSP is now at a $2 a barrel premium to Dubai quotes, up 56 cents from the previous month and in line with spot deals last month. Murban’s spot premium hit a 19-month high last month when a June-loading cargo was sold at a premium of 90 cents a barrel.

The price hikes have made Adnoc grades more expensive than Saudi crudes, which could weigh on spot differentials when July-loading cargoes start trading later this month, traders said.

“With margins coming off, Murban may be traded at a small premium to parity, then fall to small discount,” an oil trader in Singapore said.

Another trader said: “I don’t think it will drop quickly to discounted level as refineries plan to run at high rates, but I definitely cannot see a 90-cents premium for Murban in July.”

April Murban is $1.70 a barrel higher than Saudi’s Arab Extra Light, slightly narrower than the $2.36 premium in March, which was the widest in more than a decade, Reuters data showed.

Source: Trade Arabia