Trafigura's LNG head takes on new Asian oil role

SINGAPORE, April 24 (Reuters) - Commodities trader Trafigura has appointed its head of liquefied natural gas (LNG) as the company’s head of oil in Asia, in addition to overseeing its gas business globally, the company said on Tuesday.

Hadi Hallouche, who is the current head of Trafigura’s natural gas, LNG, naphtha and condensates trading, is now transitioning to the company’s Singapore office, Trafigura’s spokeswoman said in an emailed statement.

Hallouche joined Trafigura in 2011 as an LNG trader in Geneva.

Martin Urdapilleta, the current head of Trafigura’s oil division in Asia, has accepted a new role based in Latin America helping manage and co-ordinate the downstream assets of Pampa Energia S.A. which are in the process of being acquired, the spokeswoman added.

Urdapilleta joined Trafigura almost 10 years ago and has worked in Buenos Aires, Geneva, Singapore and across biodiesel, distillates, naphtha, condensates and crude – as well as most recently managing the oil trading division in Asia, she added.

Earlier this year, Trafigura said it has moved its commodities hedging operations to the United States and Asia and away from Europe to avoid being subject to the new, tighter MiFID II market regulations.

Trafigura increased its traded volumes of LNG by 27 percent to 8.1 million tonnes in 2017 after expanding its trading desk, aided by sharp Asian demand growth.

Swiss trading houses are expanding into the global market for LNG, until recently the preserve of oil majors such as Royal Dutch Shell and Exxon Mobil, and expect to grab a $10 billion share of the business this year, delivering more than 8.5 percent of global supply. (Reporting by Jessica Jaganathan; Editing by Christian Schmollinger)