China buys 35% of Viet Nam’s crude oil

Thursday, Sep 21, 2017 16:00

Engineers work with facilities at PVN’s Bach Ho (White Tiger) oil field in the southern province of Ba Ria – Vung Tau. — VNA/VNS Photo Thanh Long

China International United Petroleum and Chemicals Co Ltd (UNIPEC) bought 35 per cent of Viet Nam’s crude oil exports in the first eight months of this year.

UNIPEC spent US$733 million to buy 1.78 million tonnes of crude oil from the Viet Nam National Oil and Gas Group (PVN). According to PVN, it extracted 10.49 million tonnes of crude oil between January and August, with 9.19 million tonnes exploited locally.

PVN and its partners sold 8.81 million tonnes at some $3.6 billion through the PetroVietnam Oil Corporation (PVOIL), of which, 4.97 million tonnes of crude oil worth $2 billion was shipped to other countries, and more than 3.8 million tonnes was supplied to domestic customers at $1.59 billion.

China was among 30 customers to buy crude oil directly from Viet Nam or via third-party international traders.

A few days ago, there were rumours that although the average price of Viet Nam’s crude oil exported to foreign markets in the first eight months of 2017 was some $408 per tonne, Vietnamese crude oil shipped to China only fetched $400 per tonne.

With 1.78 million tonnes of crude oil sold to China at this price, Viet Nam lost more than VND340 billion ($15 million) because of the price difference.

However, PVN denied the rumours.

The group claimed that Chinese customers imported the product directly from PVN at an average price of $412 per tonne, $9.59 higher than the average export price. For all China’s crude oil imports from Viet Nam, the average price was $405.31 per tonne, $2.9 above the average export price.

PVN added that the price depended on the quality of crude oil and existing market conditions.

Viet Nam currently extracts and exports 18 types of crude oil, with 17 kinds being extracted from local oil fields and one from an overseas oil field. The quality of the crude oil is different, leading to a price difference of $17-18 per tonne between high-quality crude oil, such as from Bach Ho (White Tiger) and Su Tu Den (Black Lion) fields, and other types of crude oil. — VNS

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