22 February 2011 16:55 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--Violent clashes in Libya caused by continuing political unrest on Tuesday forced more producers to shut down and pushed up the cost of oil, naphtha and aromatics as concerns over supply disruptions spread across the market.
Tens of thousands of people have held protests across Libya, including in its capital Tripoli and the country's second-largest city, Benghazi, in efforts to force leader Colonel Muammar Gaddafi to step down from power and reform his government, following uprisings in Tunisia and Egypt.
Reports have said that fighting between protestors and supporters of Gaddafi have left hundreds of people dead and injured.
As anti-government unrest in the country intensified, Brent crude futures rose by more than $2/bbl on the previous close to levels last seen in early September 2008, while NYMEX light sweet crude futures climbed to a price range not seen since October 2008.
At 08:03 hours GMT, April Brent on ?xml:namespace>
Meanwhile, naphtha and aromatics prices in Asia surged as global crude futures continued to spike on concerns of supply disruption amid the ongoing political unrest in
At 09:26 GMT, light sweet crude for March delivery was trading at $94.02/bbl, up $7.82/bbl from Friday's close since the
The effects of the soaring price of crude oil overrode the influence of a weaker crack spread to take the naphtha cargo range to $904-912/tonne CIF (cost, insurance and freight) NWE (northwest Europe).
Shipping activities in Libya also remained uncertain as telecommunications, the only means of communication with vessels and shipping agents, were crippled.
A source from shipowner General National Maritime Transport Co (GNMTC) said the group had not yet evacuated its staff, but it had contingency plans in place.
BASF’s energy unit, Wintershall, was evacuating international staff from
The company, which produces around 6% of
In addition, Spanish oil company Repsol-YPF has also suspended its production in
State-owned oil company National Oil Corp (NOC) of
In a speech on Tuesday evening, Gaddafi said he would not resign and that he would stay in
Additional reporting by Lester Teo, Rebecca Clarke, Sarah Trinder Pearl Bantillo and Jo Pitches
($1 = €0.74)
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