BEIJING (Reuters) – The September-delivery crude contract on the Shanghai International Energy Exchange (INE) expired on Friday with five companies set to deliver crude oil through the exchange next month, according to exchange data and four people familiar with the matter.
The companies will deliver 601,000 bbls of crude oil, worth 292.7 million yuan ($43 million), through INE’s delivery mechanism from Sept. 3 to 7, the people familiar said. The companies include state-owned Chinaoil, Unipec, CNPC Fuel Oil, Zhenhua Oil and an unidentified private firm.
The people familiar said that 300,000 barrels of crude will be delivered storage tanks in Zhanjiang, 100,000 barrels to Dalian, and 201,000 barrels to Zhoushan’s Cezi Island.
September is the first contract to expire on the INE and investors are keen to see whether the delivery process for the new crude futures, which started trading in March, will be smooth.
“The delivery of 601,000 barrel meet market expectation,” said Bruce Xu, a crude oil analyst with broker Haitong Futures. “In the following delivery process, we are watching the actual cost for buyers to transport the crude from tanks to their refinery.”
The INE contract is the first yuan-denominated oil contract and is aimed at building a regional benchmark to reflect China’s purchasing power in the crude market. The country is the world’s biggest oil importer.
The grades being delivered include Iraqi’s Basra Light crude and Oman crude, with Basra one of the cheapest choices for delivery into the contract, said a manager at a second futures broker who asked to remain unidentified.
($1 = 6.8300 Chinese yuan renminbi)
(Reporting by Meng Meng and Aizhu Chen; Editing by Kenneth Maxwell and Christian Schmollinger)