RIYADH: Oil prices fell more than $1 on Wednesday to their lowest since before Russia invaded Ukraine as COVID-19 curbs in top crude importer China and expectations of more interest rate hikes spurred worries of a global economic recession and lower fuel demand.
Brent crude futures fell $1.35, or 1.5 percent, to $91.48 a barrel by 0420 GMT after slipping 3 percent in the previous session. The contract hit a session low of $91.35, the lowest since Feb. 18.
US West Texas Intermediate crude futures shed $1.55, or 1.8 percent, to $85.33. The benchmark fell to a session low of $85.17, the lowest since Jan. 26.
China’s August crude oil imports drop
China’s crude oil imports in August fell 9.4 percent from a year earlier, customs data showed on Wednesday, as outages at state-run refineries and lower operations at independent plants caused by weak margins capped buying.
The world’s largest crude importer brought in 40.35 million tons of crude oil last month, equivalent to about 9.5 million barrels per day, data from the General Administration of Customs showed.
That compared to 8.79 million bpd in July and 10.49 million bpd in August 2021.
Imports for the first eight months totaled 330.18 million tons, or about 9.92 million bpd, down 4.7 percent versus the same period last year, as extended COVID-19 restrictions crimped fuel demand.
Shutdowns at refineries last month also likely impacted imports.
Myanmar to start buying Russian oil products, pay in roubles: RIA
Myanmar has started buying Russian oil products and is ready to pay for deliveries in roubles, the RIA news agency cited junta leader Senior General Min Aung Hlaing as saying on Wednesday.
In a statement, the Kremlin said the Myanmar leader met Russian President Vladimir Putin during the Eastern Economic Forum in Russia’s Far East port of Vladivostok.
“Our relations are developing positively,” the Russian news agency quoted Putin as saying during the meeting.
Min Aung Hlaing’s second trip to Russia in less than two months comes as Myanmar’s ruling military looks to shore up one of its few diplomatic alliances in the face of growing international pressure.
(With input from Reuters)