Argus-delivered ex-ship (des) Shandong assessments are the first transaction-based prices for China. These five crude grades are the most traded on Shandong’s spot market and allow traders, producers and refiners to shift from risky fixed-price deals to floating-price indexation.

Price assessment details

Tupi Des Shandong

Two-thirds of Brazilian crude exports are shipped to China, but since mid-2022, state-owned refiners have replaced independent firms as the primary recipients. The Argus des Shandong Tupi assessment provides the first-ever market assessment for Brazil’s most significant export stream that does not price at the point of loading and is underpinned by around 800,000 b/d of spot market liquidity. The des Tupi assessment gives producers, traders and refiners an option to shift to floating-price indexation from fixed-price trades in a volatile market environment.

ESPO Blend Des Shandong

assessment for Russia’s core export grade to Asia-Pacific, giving market participants price visibility down the supply chain. China remains the primary market for ESPO Blend, and the des Shandong market trades ESPO Blend throughout the month.

Djeno Des Shandong

More than 15pc of China’s crude imports come from west Africa, of which a steady 170,000 b/d is Congolese Djeno. Argus assessments of Djeno on a delivered China basis represent the typical value of West African medium sweet crude in the Chinese market, where such grades compete with those from Brazil.

Johan Sverdrup Des Shandong

Shipments of Johan Sverdrup to China have slowed since the start of the Russia-Ukraine conflict — Russian Urals have diverted east to the Asia-Pacific. At the same time, European refiners now pay a premium to preserve access to the regional grade. Periodically, Johan Sverdrup still ships to China when European demand falters. With a specification of API°28 and sulphur 0.8pc, Johan Sverdrup competes on quality with Brazilian and West African grades in China. Like the rest of the des Shandong price assessments, des Shandong Johan Sverdrup is assessed as an average of deals done over the day, but with an assessment window of 60-100 days forward.

Oman Des Shandong

Argus’ des Shandong Oman assessment indicates the value of medium sour crude traded on a delivered-to-China basis. This has tended, since 2022, to represent the price paid by independent refiners in Shandong for grades such as Iranian Light or Russian Urals — whichever is cheaper — rather than Oman Export Blend.

Key price assessments

Argus prices are recognised by the market as trusted and reliable indicators of the real market value. Explore some of our most widely used and relevant price assessments.