线上博彩平台排名(www.99cx.vip):Looming ban on Russian crude has oil industry on tenterhooks

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All at sea: A tanker at the crude oil terminal Kozmino. Among the risks of the plan to cap the price of Russian crude is that the logistics won’t be able to keep pace. — Reuters

CRUDE oil prices are engaged in a tussle between fears of a recession-led demand decline and ongoing supply tightness, with risks to demand currently edging ahead.

But many in the oil industry are concerned that supply tightness will make a comeback when the European Union ban on Russian crude imports comes into effect in December, and a similar measure on refined products in February 2023.

The industry is holding its first major face-to-face gathering in Asia at the S&P Global Commodity Insights APPEC 2022 event, and uncertainty over how the ban will work in practice and how it will adjust is rife.

It’s safe to say that very few in the oil industry think the ban is a good idea, not only from the perspective of the risk to supply, but also from the perspective of increased compliance, freight and other costs.

And then there’s the always present factor that some players will work out ways to cheat and prosper from what is effectively governmental interference in the world’s most important commodity market.

It’s worth looking at what is at stake and what the most plausible scenarios are when the bans come into effect.

Europe currently gets around two million barrels per day (bpd) of crude and about 1 million bpd of products from Russia.

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The current plan is that these barrels will no longer go to Europe, but they can stay on the world market under a yet-to-be-determined price cap set by the European Union, the United States and other countries party to the ban on Russian crude and products.

Compliance measures

Refiners, insurers, shippers and traders would be able to deal in Russian crude and products if they adhere to the price cap and its associated compliance measures.

The aim is to achieve two things. Firstly, to keep Russian crude and products in the global mix but at a substantially reduced price, which acts as punishment for Moscow for its Feb 24 invasion of Ukraine.

Product exports

There are several risk factors that are currently unknown. Chief among them is whether Russian President Vladimir Putin will meekly accept a price cap on much of his country’s crude and product exports, or whether he will simply shut down production and see if that will cripple Western economies and weaken their resolve.

Assuming Putin does allow crude to continue to flow under a price cap, the problem then becomes one of compliance and logistics.

While the levels of the price cap are yet to be released, it’s probably a fair assumption that it will have to be at a fairly steep discount to the prevailing price of a global benchmark such as Brent crude futures.

In early Asian trade yesterday, Brent crude oil was trading near a nine-month low of US$84.75 (RM391) per barrel, having dropped nearly 20% since the end of August as global recession fears grow.

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