Saudi Aramco leaves Arab Light OSP for Asia at +$1.50/b

5 Feb 2024

Quantum Commodity Intelligence – Saudi Aramco has left its Official Selling Price (OSP) for the flagship Arab Light crude for March loading unchanged for customers in Asia, while prices for Europe and the US were also largely steady.

For Aramco's key customer base in Asia, differentials for the flagship Arab Light grade was set at to Platts Dubai/DME Oman +$1.50/b, having been cut last month from January’s +$3.50/b, which was the lowest OSP since November 2021.

This was at the low end of expectations with polls predicting a rise of around $0.50/b, based on a firmer market structure an higher spot premiums last month.

Arab Medium was trimmed by $0.20/b to +$0.55/b, while Arab Heavy was unchanged at -$0.30/b. Arab Extra Light was reduced by just $0.05/b to +$1.50/b.  

The key M1/M3 (Mar24/May24), which National Oil Companies use in OSP calculations, averaged +$0.67/b in January versus parity in December, a move that would typically signal a rise in Asian OSPs.

Spot

Differentials for spot Middle East medium sour barrels such as Oman and Upper Zakum improved during January, with selling indications by month end at around +$1/b to underlying Dubai swaps, having traded at discounts at the back end of December.

The Quantum average price for Dubai was $78.68/b for March-loading barrels versus $77.33/b on February-loading crude, a gain of 1.75% after the East-of-Suez benchmark had posted sharp losses in the previous three months as monthly prices tumbled $16/b from the September average of $93.31/b.

For Northwest Europe, Arab Light was unchanged at +$0.90/b versus ICE Brent futures, while Medium was held at +$0.20/b.

Arab Light for March to the US Gulf was set at +$7.10/b over ASCI (Argus Sour Crude Index) versus +$7.15/b in February, while Medium was at +$5.85/b and Heavy at +$5.40/b, both unchanged on the month.