Two Cargos of Forties Crude Delayed Due to Buzzard Fire, Production Ramp Up Expected Soon

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April 24, 2012

LONDON (Dow Jones)–Two cargoes from the May loading program of North Sea Forties crude have been deferred as the Nexen Inc. (NXY)-operated Buzzard oil field, the largest contributing to Forties crude oil, remains shut following a fire Saturday at one of its platforms, North Sea traders said Tuesday.

Cargo F0507 has been delayed by four days and cargo F0516 by two. In the original loading program, both cargoes were marked as held by Nexen. Earlier this week, April cargo F0411, already delayed, has been further deferred by two days.

The price of Forties, the main component of global benchmark Brent, has been little affected so far by the Buzzard production halt. But traders and analysts said earlier Tuesday that the price is set to rise if the halt is prolonged.

Sharp moves in Forties prices often filter through into Brent futures.

“The repairs [at 200,000-barrel-a-day Buzzard] are going well and we’re preparing for start up with production expected to ramp up Wednesday,” a Nexen spokeswoman said earlier Tuesday.

-By Konstantin Rozhnov, Dow Jones Newswires

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