Socar Trading expands crude team to target Chinese refiners

Baku, November 30, AZERTAC

Nov 30 Azeri state oil company Socar's trading division has hired three new crude traders who will be based in London with a view to targeting the Chinese market, said its chief executive Arzu Azimov, according to Reuters.

Wang Zheng, the former head of crude at Unipec in London, and Xun Dong, a former crude trader at Shell, joined Socar this month and a third trader is due to join in the new year.

"Of course we will exercise their (traders') network in China and access to refineries in China," Socar Trading CEO Arzu Azimov said.

"Our strategy is global crude trading and the missing point so far was coverage of Asia because Asia was mostly concentrated around marketing/supply with national oil companies and government-to-government deals."

Socar Trading plans to sell directly to Chinese refiners, the so-called "teapots", which were given import licenses in 2015. Asian refiners prefer heavier crude, he said.

In Asia, Azeri Light goes to Indonesia, Thailand, Vietnam and sometimes Taiwan.

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