Oil price nears $80 per barrel

Oil steady near multi-year highs as US drilling rises

Oil steady near multi-year highs as US drilling rises

China's refinery runs rose almost 12 percent in April from a year earlier, to around 12.06 million barrels per day, marking the second-highest level on record on a daily basis, data showed.

While all eyes are riveted on Iran and the Middle East, the pace of Chinese oil demand growth could be the most underappreciated story in oil markets right now, Bloomberg Opinion columnist David Fickling writes. Current OPEC compliance with production cut plans remains above their historical average, and it usually takes between two to three quarters for inventories to normalize after the cuts.

The Kremlin-controlled company also said it has concluded a two-year deal with French oil major Total to supply crude oil via the Druzhba (Friendship) pipeline to Germany, amounting to between 4.8 million tonned and 10.8 million tonnes.

So far this year, China has lived up to these expectations.

Much of the Iran's oil exports head to Asia now, with over than 1.5 million barrels per day sent to the likes of China, Japan, South Korea, and India.

The data poses worries that near-record high refinery runs may be short-lived.

Production levels will be a key topic of discussion at the upcoming June 22 OPEC ministerial meeting where the Vienna Agreement, which began in 2017, is expected to be discussed. Crude oil production in March was around 3.76 million bpd, flat compared with the average levels in January and February.

North Korea to finish dismantling nuclear test site 'within two weeks'
Yoon said some Korean-Americans are skeptical of Kim Jun Un's promises to dismantle nuclear weapons but South Koreans see promise. Most of the nuclear program was dismantled within months and nuclear material was shipped out of the country.

Some oil analysts have said they expect Iranian crude exports to fall by as little as 200,000 barrels per day (bpd), while others put the figure closer to 1 million bpd.

"Gas prices are their highest in years, yet that doesn't seem to be slowing motorists down", said Mark Jenkins, spokesman for AAA.

As of this writing, the oil companies that already advised on price increases include Flying V of the Villavicencio Group, Pilipinas Shell Petroleum Corporation, PTT Philippines, Chevron (which is carrying the Caltex brand) and Seaoil effective 6:00am on Tuesday; while the rest of the industry players are expected to follow the price adjustment trends.

Oil held near $71 a barrel on heightened political risks in the Middle East following unrest in Gaza and the return of sanctions against Iran.

Essentially, there is the Oil Price Fundamental Daily Forecast - OPEC Says Global Supply Glut Virtually Eliminatedthreat of increased USA production.

Iran's oil buyers continue to buy its crude, assessing the implications of the sanctions during the 180-day wind-down period.

Moody's, for its part, said its baseline assessment was that oil prices would be volatile, trading in the range of $45 to $65 per barrel. If demand growth continues to be strong-as now expected-an already tight oil market could become even tighter amid geopolitical concerns, driving oil prices further up.

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