Several Gulf naphtha producers are struggling with surpluses.
Abu Dhabi National Oil Co (ADNOC) plans to sell around 1 mln tons of naphtha for October 2010-September 2011 delivery. Traditionally, the Gulf company has three yearly contracts: January-December, April-March and July-June. The October contract has been an addition this year due to additional naphtha supplies available after start up of a liquefied natural gas (LNG) train this year. ADNOC has an additional 150,000 tons/month of splitter naphtha and some 100,000 tons/month of paraffinic grade. ADNOC is offering 75,000 tons in the spot market for Sept. 1-3 loading from Ruwais in a tender closing on Aug. 5.
This fresh offering coincided with Kuwait's offer of 74,000 tons for H1-September loading, as per Reuters. Most North Asian buyers have also given up term contracts with Saudi Aramco, Kuwait Petroleum Corp and Qatar's Tasweeq, compelling 1 mln tons of naphtha for July-August loading into the spot market recently, injuring market sentiments.
Naphtha cracks have retreated to a five-session low on Tuesday at US$70.63/ton on expectations of abundant spot Middle Eastern barrels for September lifting. Sentiment was also hit by the failure to move some of the planned shipments to the United States, where stockpiles are also high.