By Sebastine Obasi, with agency report

The closure of Trans Niger Pipeline, TNP, has taken its toll on demand for Nigeria’s crude oil as there have been no fresh Bonny Light loading schedule issued since the January 3 fire incident.

Attention has shifted to Angola, which has attracted more demand from China.

Offer levels for other grades were slipping due to demand constraints. ExxonMobil was said to have offered Qua Iboe as low as 80 cents above dated Brent.

India’s BPCL took two cargoes of Nigerian crude and a pending tender from IOC set to close this week could absorb more.

The awards included Agbami, Akpo, Bonga and Bonny Light. Other buying interests were notably thin due largely to unpredictable loading plans for several grades.

Angolan state oil company, Sonangol, has cut output by 78,000 barrels per day, bpd, to 1.673 million bpd as part of an OPEC agreement to lower supply from January 1, it said in a statement.

Chinese demand for Angolan crude and other medium grades was robust, traders said, due in part to the narrow spread between Brent and Dubai crudes that made the grades more attractive.

China’s Unipec has snapped up several cargoes over the past two weeks, including Pazflor from ExxonMobil at dated Brent plus $1.20 per barrel, Nemba from Sonangol at around minus 60 cents along with cargoes of Dalia and Saxi.

Traders said Cabinda was around 40 cents below dated Brent, Hungo minus $1.30 per barrel and Mondo at minus $1.20.

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