SINGAPORE, Dec 24 (Reuters) - Asia's cash differentials for jet fuel flipped back to premiums on Tuesday, thanks to a slight uptick in buying interest for physical cargoes this week, while refining margins for the aviation fuel dropped for a second session on ample supplies. Cash differentials for jet fuelwere at a premium of 13 cents per barrel to Singapore quotes, compared with a narrow discount of 2 cents per barrel on Monday. Refining margins or cracks for jet fuel fell to $14.59 per barrel over Dubai crude during Asian trade, down from $14.85 per barrel on Monday. The jet fuel cracks in Singapore were currently about 2.9% lower than its seasonal level for this time of the year in the last three years, Refinitiv Eikon data showed. The likelihood of higher refinery runs in the wake of International Maritime Organization (IMO) rules in 2020 would keep the jet fuel market well supplied in the near term, but Chinese New Year holiday in January is expected nudge up some aviation demand, market participants said. New IMO rules require shippers to reduce the sulphur content in fuels used in their vessels from next year, and refiners are expected to ramp up production in order to meet demand for compliant fuels. Meanwhile, refining margins for gasoil with 10 ppm sulphur content dipped to $15.27 per barrel over Dubai crude, down from $15.45 a barrel on Monday. Cash premiums for 10 ppm gasoil fell to 67 cents per barrel over Singapore quotes, hurt by muted demand for physical cargoes. They were at a premium of 78 cents a barrel on Monday. SHIPPING FUEL OF CHOICE AHEAD OF IMO 2020 - With a week until the implementation of IMO rules, shippers appear to be favouring very low-sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) mixes over distillate fuels. - The price differential between VLSFO and marine gasoil has narrowed sharply at various major port locations around the world in recent weeks. - The IMO 2020 rules lower the ceiling on sulphur in ship fuel to 0.5% sulphur unless they are equipped with exhaust-cleaning systems known as scrubbers, down from 3.5% currently. - In Singapore, the world's largest bunkering port, the difference in price between VLSFO and marine gasoil, a distillate-based fuel that also satisfies the new sulphur requirement, was at near parity late last week, around $650 a tonne, according to S&P Global Platts assessments. This compares with $75 a tonne in early-September. INDONESIA LAUNCHES B30 BIODIESEL TO CUT COSTS - Indonesia on Monday launched biodiesel containing 30% palm-based fuel, the highest mandatory mix in the world, in a bid to slash its fuel import bill and boost domestic palm oil consumption. - President Joko Widodo said so-called "B30" biodiesel would allow Indonesia to cut its fossil fuel imports by 63 trillion rupiah ($4.5 billion) a year, up from 43.8 trillion rupiah saved in 2019 from existing B20 fuels. - Indonesia, the world's biggest palm oil producer and exporter, has been gradually increasing the bio content of its biodiesel, aiming to absorb growing supplies of palm oil while also trimming costly fuel imports. SINGAPORE CASH DEALS - No gasoil trades, one jet fuel deal. - Singapore trader Hin Leong sold 100,000 barrels of jet fuel to BP for Jan. 19-23 loading at $79.20 a barrel. - For more information, please click OTHER NEWS - Latin America's share of Indian oil imports plunged in November to its lowest in 20 months, tanker arrival data showed, as refiners bought similar heavier grades from the Middle East to reduce shipping costs. India, the world's third largest oil consumer, bought about 390,400 barrels per day (bpd) of Latin American oil during November, or 9.1% of the country's total imports, down from 12% in October, the data from shipping and industry sources showed. - Oil prices edged higher after Russia's energy minister, Alexander Novak, said cooperation with OPEC on supporting the market would continue and as analysts forecast a second weekly decline in U.S. crude inventories. ASSESSMENTS MID-DISTILLATES CASH ($/T) ASIA CLOSE Change % Change Prev Close RIC Spot Gas Oil 0.5% 77.99 0.36 0.46 77.63 GO 0.5 Diff -2.35 -0.08 3.52 -2.27 Spot Gas Oil 0.25% 78.59 0.36 0.46 78.23 GO 0.25 Diff -1.75 -0.08 4.79 -1.67 Spot Gas Oil 0.05% 79.81 0.36 0.45 79.45 GO 0.05 Diff -0.53 -0.08 17.78 -0.45 Spot Gas Oil 0.001% 81.01 0.33 0.41 80.68 GO 0.001 Diff 0.67 -0.11 -14.10 0.78 Spot Jet/Kero 79.79 0.51 0.64 79.28 Jet/Kero Diff 0.13 0.15 -750.00 -0.02 For a list of derivatives prices, including margins, please double click the RICs below. Brent M1 Gasoil M1 Gasoil M1/M2 Gasoil M2 Regrade M1 Regrade M2 Jet M1 Jet M1/M2 Jet M2 Gasoil 500ppm-Dubai Cracks M1 Gasoil 500ppm-Dubai Cracks M2 Jet Cracks M1 Jet Cracks M2 East-West M1 East-West M2 LGO M1 LGO M1/M2 LGO M2 Crack LGO-Brent M1 Crack LGO-Brent M2 (Reporting by Koustav Samanta; editing by Uttaresh.V)
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