In the past week, the global economy has followed the wave of a new corona epidemic in China, which is causing concern. With the announcement of new cases in China and several new restrictions in 7 cities in China, people are starting to oppose the zero COVID policy. Crude oil hit $81 amid this setback and the virus outbreak. However, the Chinese government appears to have eased restrictions and other cities are not completely closed.
Nevertheless, due to the new pneumonia epidemic and the drop in fuel prices, fuel oil fell back below US$400 in Singapore, sending the market into turmoil. Fuel prices in Singapore rose by about $26 to $395 on November 29 but fell by $21 to $374 on November 30. These fluctuations have other side effects: when demand increases in European and Mediterranean markets, they no longer follow the state of market prices, while Asian markets fear falling prices.
Last week, the price of bulk bitumen in Singapore reached about US$510, while the price in South Korea reached US$400. Meanwhile, Bahrain had another week of stable prices, holding a firm in the $425 area. Bitumen prices in India rose by about 20 dollars on December 1.
To be more specific, falling fuel oil and crude oil prices have reduced average competition among refiners from 64% to less than 50%, with exporters worried about prices. The decline in container shipping costs is indicative of lower export levels in many markets. But bulk bitumen exports from Iran’s southern ports are increasing compared to previous years, with more than 120,000 tonnes of bitumen exported in November alone. An increase in prepackaged bitumen exports was expected, as bulk bitumen prices increased significantly and there was a slight difference between bulk and prepackaged bitumen prices. However, given the current market volatility, decisions should be taken with more caution.
This article was prepared by Shirin Yousefi, the Content specialist and market analyst of Infinity Galaxy.