Thursday, May 13, 2010

Saudi Aramco Said to Cut Offer for Naphtha Supply

By Ann Koh and Anthony DiPaola

May 13 (Bloomberg) -- Saudi Aramco, the world’s largest state-owned oil company, lowered its offer for naphtha to be supplied in the second half of this year, three people with knowledge of the talks said.

The company offered Rabigh-grade naphtha at $21 a metric ton above its benchmark and Jubail at a premium of $19 a ton, according to the people, who asked not to be identified since the talks are private. Saudi Aramco offered A-310 grade naphtha at a premium of $19 a ton and A-180 grade at $20 above the benchmark, the people said.

Saudi Aramco sells naphtha free-on-board, requiring buyers to pay shipping costs. Naphtha, distilled from crude oil, is a raw material for gasoline, ethylene and chemicals. The talks are still ongoing and may finish this week, the people said.

Aramco initially offered to sell the A310 and Jubail grades at $24 above the benchmark and the Rabigh and A180 grades at a $25 premium, according to one of the people.

Saudi Arabia, holder of the world’s largest oil reserves and the biggest producer in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, imports refined products such as gasoline and diesel because it lacks processing capacity to meet domestic demand for those fuels. It exports crude and other products such as fuel oil and naphtha produced in the refinery process.

--Editors: Rob Verdonck, Stephen Cunningham

To contact the reporter on this story: Ann Koh in Singapore at; Anthony DiPaola in Dubai at

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Clyde Russell at; Stephen Voss on

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