Iran plans to trim condensate exports to Asia in October

SINGAPORE/BEIJING (Reuters) — The National Iranian Oil Co has informed buyers in Asia that it could reduce condensate exports in October because of maintenance at the South Pars gas field, six industry sources said on Tuesday.

NIOC could trim exports by at least 1 MMbbl that month, one of the sources said. The company typically exports about 15 MMbbl of South Pars condensate each month.

The drop in Iranian condensate exports in October comes as China’s Unipec is about to resume cargo liftings from Iran in October, a second source said. The trading arm of Asia’s largest refiner Sinopec typically halts imports in summer months due to environmental restrictions at Chinese ports.

Demand for Iran’s condensate is also on the rise as test runs continue at a new splitter operated by its Persian Gulf Star Refinery at Bandar Abbas, the sources said.

A rise in Chinese demand and a drop in Iranian supplies have supported values for Qatari condensate. Spot premiums for low-sulfur condensate (LSC) in November are up about 70 cents from the previous month.

Condensate is an ultra light oil that is processed in splitters to produce mainly naphtha, a petrochemical raw material.

Reporting by Chen Aizhu in BEIJING, Florence Tan and Mark Tay in SINGAPORE; Editing by Richard Pullin

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