* First diesel cargo to load late next week
* ADNOC sells first jet fuel cargo and discussing sale of second diesel cargo
* Ruwais refinery running at 50-60 percent capacity
* First gasoline cargo could be exported in April (Adds details)
By Jessica Jaganathan
SINGAPORE, March 5 (Reuters) - State-owned Abu Dhabi National Oil Co (ADNOC) will export its first diesel and jet fuel cargoes from the newly expanded Ruwais refinery in March, adding to a supply glut facing Asia and the Middle East, traders said on Thursday.
The company has sold its first diesel cargo to be loaded from Ruwais between March 12 and March 14 and its first jet fuel cargo to be loaded between March 21 to 23, the traders said.
The diesel cargo was likely sold to Brazil’s Petrobras and the jet fuel cargo to French oil major Total , they said, though this could not immediately be confirmed.
ADNOC is currently in talks to sell a second diesel cargo to be loaded over March 22 to 24, and is expected to slowly ramp up overall exports once production is stable, they added.
The intial diesel cargoes being offered do not meet stringent specifications required by Europe and will likely remain in the region or be shipped to Africa, one of them said.
Petrobras could likely ship ADNOC’s first diesel cargo to Brazil on workable arbitrage economics, a middle distillates trader said, though this could not be confirmed with Petrobras officials.
ADNOC’s expanded Ruwais refinery is currently running at about 50 to 60 percent of its capacity, and is expected to export its first gasoline cargo in April when it starts up a residual fluid catalytic cracking (RFCC) unit, one of the sources said.
The expansion is expected to more than double the capacity of the refinery from 415,000 barrels-per-day (bpd) and will process Abu Dhabi’s Murban crude oil.
Once fully commissioned, the expanded refinery is expected to produce an additional 8 million tonnes a year of diesel and about 4 million tonnes a year of jet fuel. The refinery currently produces 5 million tonnes a year of diesel and 6 million tonnes a year of jet fuel.
Ruwais’ expansion comes at a time when new refining capacity from the Middle East, including two new refineries in Saudi Arabia, are adding to excess supply while diesel demand from major consumers such as China and Indonesia has slowed. (Reporting by Jessica Jaganathan; Editing by Biju Dwarakanath)