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Singapore to receive its first fuel oil cargo exported from Nigeria's Dangote refinery

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - Singapore, Asia's oil hub, will be receiving this week its first low-sulfur straight-run (LSSR) fuel oil cargo exported from Nigeria's new Dangote refinery, according to ship-tracking data and market sources.

This marks a new trade flow from the newly-commissioned refinery to Asia, a region that is structurally short on low-sulfur fuel oil required to meet demand for ship refueling at the world's largest bunker hub, Singapore.

The Dangote refinery, which began production in January and cost $20 B to build, can refine up to 650,000 bpd of products and will be the largest in Africa and Europe when it reaches full capacity.

The refinery has been exporting more LSSR since March, with most of these cargoes landing in America and Europe so far, ship-tracking data from Kpler and Vortexa showed.

The first such cargo to Asia is scheduled to arrive on Wednesday, with the Glencore-chartered vessel Front Brage carrying about 124,000 metric t (787,400 bbl) of LSSR to Singapore, the data showed.

Some market sources said the cargo was sent to Asia due to a much weaker market in Europe. The front-month 0.5% LSFO east-west spread, which is the difference between prices in the East versus the West, remained above $40 a ton this week, LSEG data showed.

Dangote's LSSR cargoes are typically priced at a differential to Rotterdam 0.5% LSFO quotes on a free-on-board basis, according to market sources, although the differential was not immediately known.

Another LSSR cargo from Dangote comprising about 157,000 t is also expected to arrive at Singapore on vessel Stena Suede in July, ship-tracking data showed.

Dangote did not immediately respond to a Reuters' request for comment.

LSSR is typically blended with other fuels to produce LSFO bunker fuel, or used as a feedstock in refinery processes.

Dangote began issuing tenders to sell oil products for export in February. It also began buying crude in December last year, with Nigeria's state-owned oil firm NNPC Ltd. as its main supplier.

(1 metric ton = 6.35 barrels for fuel oil)

Fuel oil imports from Nigeria's Dangote refinery by regions https://tmsnrt.rs/3Xk3RMP

(Reporting by Jeslyn Lerh; Additional reporting by Isaac Anyaogu in Lagos; Editing by Florence Tan and Mrigank Dhaniwala)

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