The Sultanate’s production of crude oil and condensate in April 2018 reached 29,032,500 barrels, with a daily average of 967,750 barrels. Total exports of Oman Crude Oil in April 2018 reached 25,893,927 barrels, with a daily average of 863,131 barrels, according to the monthly report issued by the Ministry of Oil and Gas (MoG).
The People’s Republic of China, increasing purchases by 2.75 per cent, imported 78.56 per cent of the total exported quantities of Omani Crude Oil during April 2018. Similarly, imports by Japan jumped 8.90 per cent, compared with a month on month basis.
However, Indian sub-continent imports of Oman export blend crude oil dropped 11 per cent, compared to March imported quantities. It is worth mentioning that April witnessed a demand for Omani crude by buyers from Malaysia at 1.93 per cent of total exported quantities.
The positive tendency in oil prices since the beginning of 2018 was reflected in the April trading session by a significant increase month-on-month in the settlement prices for the major crude oil benchmarks around the world for June 2018 delivery.
The average price for West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude oil at the New York Mercantile Exchange (Nymex) was $66.31 per barrel, up $5.70 compared to March 2018. Meanwhile, the average North Sea Brent mix at the Intercontinental Exchange (ICE) in London reached $71.76 per barrel, up by $7,60 compared to the previous month’s trading.
With the same trend, the average price for Oman Crude Oil Future Contracts at the Dubai Mercantile Exchange (DME) witnessed an increase of 5.01 per cent compared to last month. The official selling price for Oman Crude Oil during April 2018, for the delivery month of June 2018, settled at $68.31, an increase of $7.90 compared to March prices. The trading price ranged between $71.32 per barrel and $64.70 per barrel.
The upsurge in crude oil prices in April 2018 was attributed to several factors that positively affected prices; including the sudden drop in US crude inventories. In addition to political tensions in Syria, the market anticipated the withdrawal of the United States from the nuclear deal and imposing economic sanctions on Iran, which would impact the global supply of oil.
The improvement in prices was also supported by the announcement made by the Organisation of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) that the surplus in global oil stocks is diminishing, while the global demand was witnessing an increase.