May 21, 2024
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OIL & GAS

Saudi Aramco Raises May Crude Prices amid Tightening Market

Saudi Aramco, the world’s leading crude oil exporter, has increased the prices of most of its crude grades for May, reflecting the strengthening of Middle Eastern benchmarks in a tightening market.

According to OilPrice.com, Saudi Arabia raised the price of Arab Light, its flagship grade sold in Asia, for the second consecutive month by more than anticipated.

Aramco set the official selling price (OSP) of Arab Light for Asia for May at a premium of $2.00 over the Oman/Dubai average, marking a $0.30 per barrel increase compared to the previous month.

This marks the second consecutive increase in the price of Saudi oil sold in Asia, following the extension of the OPEC+ production cut agreement until the end of the first half of the year.

The price for Arab Light was raised by $0.20 per barrel over the Oman/Dubai average for April, with May seeing a further increase of $0.30 per barrel.

The increase for May aligns with the upper end of refining sources’ expectations, with a Reuters survey indicating expectations of a hike between $0.20 and $0.30 per barrel. Meanwhile, a Bloomberg survey anticipated a more modest increase of $0.10 per barrel.

Middle Eastern crude benchmarks, including Saudi Arabia’s, have experienced a rally in recent days amid a tightening market and geopolitical concerns in the region.

Brent prices surpassed $90 per barrel this week, further supporting the increase in crude prices.

Saudi Arabia typically announces its crude pricing for the following month around the fifth of each month.

The May OSPs were released following the Joint Ministerial Monitoring Committee (JMMC) meeting of the OPEC+ group, which did not recommend any changes to output policy.

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