MOSCOW, Feb 3 (Reuters) - Urals prices weakened on Wednesday in northwest Europe as demand waned due to most refiners meeting their needs for February.
In the Platts window, Glencore offered 100,000 tonnes of Urals for loading either from Ust-Luga or Primorsk on Feb. 18-22 at a discount of $2.65 a barrel to BFOE, but failed to attract any buyers, traders said.
Earlier this week the grade was assessed about 10 cents stronger amid strong buying interest. On Monday Litasco failed to buy 100,000 tonnes of Urals loading on Feb. 12-16, offering a discount of $2.60 a barrel to BFOE.
Also on Monday PKN Orlen awarded its tender to buy 100,000 tonnes of Urals loading from the Baltic ports to Trafigura at a discount around $2.70 a barrel to dated Brent.
In the Mediterranean, Urals prices remained with no trading activity taking. Traders expected the flow of Iranian oil to the region to impact negatively on the Russian grade’s price in the south of Europe.
Hellenic Petroleum closed its tender to buy Urals, CPC Blend and Basrah Light for late February and early March delivery. The results had yet to emerge.
Prices for Azeri light loading from Ceyhan continued to struggle because of low middle-distillate margins, traders said.
In the Platts window Socar tried to sell 80,000 tonnes of Azeri light loading from Ceyhan down to a premium of $1.55 a barrel to BFOE and withdrew the offer at this level, they said.
It was quiet on CPC Blend market. The revised loading programme for February showed nearly no change to the preliminary one and premiums were still under pressure. Glencore on Tuesday sold a cargo loading in mid-February to BP at a discount of $0.25 a barrel to BFOE.
Traders expect differentials for Mediterranean grades to come under pressure as the first signs of shipments of Iranian oil to European region appeared.
Spain’s Cepsa fixed the vessel Monte Toledo to carry 140,000 tonnes of Iranian oil to its refineries in Spain, shipping data showed. The vessel will be loaded from Kharg Island in the middle of February, traders said.
It is the second cargo of Iranian oil expected to head to Europe. On Feb. 5 Litasco will load 140,000 tonnes of Iranian crude for delivery to the port of Constanza to supply its Petrotel refinery, shipping data showed. (Reporting by Olga Yagova, editing by David Evans)