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Nigeria’s oil exports are expected to drop to their 2018 low in July—to just 1.43 million bpd, compared to 1.796 million bpd in June, partly due to a force majeure on Bonny Light cargoes, according to loading schedules seen by Reuters.
A total of 48 cargoes are planned to be loaded in July, compared to 60 this month. While the Bonga and Qua Iboe cargoes will be one more next month compared to this month, no program for Bonny Light has yet been issued for July, and Forcados cargoes will be seven in July, down from 10 in June.
Shell declared force majeure on Bonny Light exports in mid-May because of the shutdown of the Nembe Creek pipeline, which has led to the accumulation of lots of unsold crude. Bonny Light shipments continue to be subject to force majeure as of June 11. Loadings of Bonny Light will probably be further delayed, after the Nembe Creek Trunk Line closed on Friday for repairs, traders told Reuters on Monday.
According to traders, between 30 and 33 cargoes are still available for sale from Nigeria’s July program, which features 48 cargoes at present.
The Forcados terminal has also faced issues over the past month, following disruptions of the oil flows on the pipeline feeding the Forcados terminal. Loading delays continued to accumulate at the end of May, also delaying the release of June and July loading programs, and possibly deferring more cargoes.
Outages at key pipelines in Nigeria resulted in the country’s oil production plunging to a one-year low in May, according to the latest S&P Global Platts survey of industry officials, analysts, and shipping data. Nigeria’s oil production dropped by 150,000 bpd from April to 1.73 million bpd in May, because of outages at pipelines carrying the Forcados and Bonny Light grades, according to the Platts survey. By Tsvetana Paraskova for Oilprice.com