Vietnam Inks Crude Oil Supply Deal with SOCAR
Vietnam's state-run Binh Son Refining and Petrochemical Co (BSR) has inked an agreement with Azeri state energy company SOCAR to buy five million barrels of crude in 2020, BSR said late on Friday.
SOCAR Trading will provide five million barrels of Azeri Light crude to BSR's Dung Quat refinery during the first half of 2020, BSR said in a statement on its web site.
The company said Azeri crude would also become one of its strategic crude oil products from 2020, following Vietnam's abolishment of an import tax on crude oil which took effect from November.
Earlier this week, BSR said it would import 8 million to 10 million barrels of West Texas Intermediate and Bonny Light crude oil in 2020 for its Dung Quat refinery.
Vietnam has been relying more on imported crude due to a slowdown in domestic output as reserves at its existing fields decline, and as China's increasingly assertive stance in the region hampers offshore exploration.
The country's crude oil imports during the first 11 months of this year rose 66% from a year earlier to 7.44 million tonnes (54.54 million barrels), government data released on Friday showed.
(Reporting by Phuong Nguyen; Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan)