PetroEcuador plans more spot tenders in 2018: CEO
Quito, 13 September (Argus) — State-owned PetroEcuador is preparing several crude tenders in 2018 following its return to the spot market this month, the company's new chief executive Byron Ojeda told Argus.
Following a hiatus of more than three years, PetroEcuador hopes to resume a policy of exporting at least 10pc of its Napo and Oriente grades and its fuel oil through spot sales.
The company today received eight offers in a tender to sell 2.16mn bl of 24°API Oriente crude.
The volume will be divided into six shipments of 360,000 bl each for delivery starting on 27-29 September.
Glencore bid a $0.51/bl premium to the WTI price; Repsol offered a premium of $0.03/bl; Unipec Asia -$1.57/bl; Vitol -$2.38/bl; PetroPeru -$2.69/bl; Phillips 66 -$2.67/bl; Trafigura -$2.72/bl, and Cosmo Oil at -$5.00/bl.
Since 2010 Ecuador has sold its crude and fuel oil through a series of oil-backed loan agreements with companies such as PetroChina, a subsidiary of China's state-owned CNPC, Unipec, a state-owned Sinopec subsidiary, and was left virtually no surplus oil for spot sales since May 2014.
In 2018 Ecuador will continue to sell its crude through a mix of long-term agreements, such as oil-backed loans, and the spot market, according to oil minister Carlos Perez.
PetroEcuador had a surplus of Oriente to sell on a spot basis because the country has increased its production since June, after Quito decided to comply only partially with its Opec commitment to cut production by 26,000 b/d.
Perez acknowledged that Ecuador is cutting just 13,000 b/d. In August, the Andean nation produced some 536,039 b/d. Quito hopes to increase production to an average 541,000 b/d in the last quarter of the year, according to oil ministry projections.