Aramco tells customers some October oil loadings will be delayed

By Tsuyoshi Inajima, Alfred Cang and Javier Blas on 9/17/2019

TOKYO (Bloomberg) – Saudi Aramco notified at least four customers that some crude deliveries in early October will be delayed to later in the month after attacks on its facilities cut output, though they’ll still receive their full contracted volumes, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Delays range from a few days to weeks, according to the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is confidential. Saudi Aramco didn’t immediately respond to an email seeking comment.

The delays are among the first signs that the attacks on Saudi Arabia’s production facilities over the weekend are starting to impact supplies to customers. The strikes have cut the nation’s output by half, triggering a record surge in oil prices on Monday, and speculation is mounting that the disruption could last weeks if not months.

The attack on the kingdom’s most important oil production facility has crimped the availability of lighter grades such as Arab Extra Light and Arab Light. Aramco has already told customers it’s likely to replace supplies of lighter grades with heavier oil, though they’ll still get contracted volumes, people said previously.

The disruption is also prompting buyers to seek alternative Middle Eastern grades such as Abu Dhabi’s Murban crude, driving up prices.

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