India, Egypt top destinations for Russian seaborne fuel oil, VGO exports in April, LSEG data shows

MOSCOW (Reuters) - India and Egypt were the top destinations for Russian seaborne fuel oil and vacuum gasoil (VGO) exports in April, traders said and LSEG data showed.

In total, Russian fuel oil and VGO seaborne exports fell in April by 10% month-on-month to about 3.32 million tons, as refining capacity idled due to maintenance, technical outages and drone attacks, increased last month by 13.6% from March, Reuters calculations showed.

The European Union's full embargo on Russian oil products went into effect in February 2023 and the bulk of Russia's fuel oil and VGO was redirected to other regions, mostly Asia.

In April 2024, direct fuel oil and VGO shipments from Russian ports to India increased to 0.6 million metric tons from 0.4 million tons the previous month.

Russian fuel oil loadings to China decreased last month to about 450,000 tons from 660,000 tons in March, according to LSEG data and Reuters' calculations.

China and India import straight-run fuel oil and VGO for refining, partially replacing more expensive Urals barrels, traders said.

Fuel oil supplies to Egypt increased in April to almost 0.5 million tons from 0.1 million tons in the previous month. All the cargoes were discharged at Ain Sukhna Terminal, shipping data showed.

Traders use Ain Sukhna Terminal as storage and blending facilities, buying fuel oil for power generation ahead of the summer season, market sources said.

At least 200,000 tons of fuel oil had been loaded in Russian ports so far in May to supply the Ain Sukhna Terminal, according to LSEG data.

Russian VGO and fuel oil loadings to Fujairah increased in April to about 260,000 tons from 60,000 tons in March.

Fuel oil supplies from Russia to Senegal fell last month to about 100,000 tons from 310,000 tons in March, while loadings to Saudi Arabia decreased to 200,000 tons versus 490,000 tons, shipping data showed.

About 300,000 tons of VGO and fuel oil loaded in Russian ports in April went for ship-to-ship loadings near Greece and Malta. Most of those cargoes end up in Asia, market sources said.

(Reporting by Reuters; Editing by Ros Russell)