SINGAPORE, Jan 22 (Reuters) - India's Reliance Industries has sold an open-spec naphtha cargo to Itochu at about $42.50 a tonne above Middle East quotes on a free-on-board (FOB) basis, up nearly 11 percent versus a previous deal of the same grade, traders said on Tuesday.
Reliance had previously sold a cargo for Jan. 20-25 loading to Total at a premium in the high $30s a tonne level to Middle East quotes.
The higher premium fetched for the 55,000-tonne cargo for late February loading from Sikka was likely a result of lower Indian supplies caused by upcoming refinery maintenance, fire at a storage terminal and previous lower production at Mangalore Refinery Petrochemicals Ltd (MRPL).
Reliance is expected to shut a crude unit next month for a planned maintenance. Indian Oil Corp (IOC), in the meantime, has limited spot barrels for export following a fire at its storage terminal in Hazira.
But the spot premiums for heavy naphtha were down as supplies of the grade are expected to increase due to several shipments coming to Asia from Europe and the Mediterranean next month. (Reporting by Seng Li Peng; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)