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BP test Russian ESPO crude stream at BP Carson (& Cherry Point) refinery

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    basil parmesan
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    BP tests ESPO crude at U.S. West Coast refinery
    Reuters – Thursday, April 1

    SINGAPORE, March 31 – BP  has carried out tests with ESPO Blend crude at its Carson refinery in California, sources close to the company said on Wednesday, confirming cargoes of the new Russian stream have moved trans-Pacific from East Siberia to the United States.
    Oil producers including Rosneft, Russia’s largest, and TNK-BP are boosting output of crude shipped via the East Siberia-Pacific Ocean pipeline, supplying refiners across Northeast Asia with an alternative to top-quality Middle East grades.
    BP, Japanese trader Mitsubishi and European trader Trafigura are among companies that traders say have signed accords with TNK-BP, Russia’s third-biggest oil producer, to buy the crude on a monthly basis, known as term deals. BP earlier this week declined to comment on specific contracts.
    ESPO is also suitable for processing at BP’s other U.S. West Coast refinery, the Cherry Point plant in Washington state, the sources said.
    Competition from ESPO contributed to prices of Alaska North Slope crude weakening to $3.25 a barrel under the West Texas Intermediate benchmark last week, traders said. ANS is normally processed by refiners in the U.S. West Coast.
    ESPO is lighter and sweeter than ANS, at 34.7 degrees API gravity and 0.59 percent sulphur. ANS has gravity of 32 degrees API and contains 0.93 percent sulphur.
    Trade sources had earlier said a smaller refiner, Tesoro , was bringing ESPO to Hawaii and to California.
    Most of the buyers of ESPO have been trading companies as well as refiners in South Korea, China and Japan.
    For a list of ESPO deals, see [ID:nSGE62003K]. (Reporting by Alejandro Barbajosa; Editing by Ramthan Hussain))

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