Oil prices fall with heightened US-China trade tensions

India's Oil Imports From Iran Down 57% In April

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Wednesday that China "broke the deal" in trade talks with Washington and would face stiff tariffs if no agreement is reached. The comments dragged on both Asian and United States stock markets.

Growing trade between the world's two largest oil consumers could affect oil demand.

"For now it's just not worth the risks as the volume is very small in (the company's) overall purchases", said the source, adding that CNPC is entitled to lift an average of 2 million barrels, about 67,000 bpd, of oil from its investment a month.

While trade war concerns have weighed on prices this week, "the spreads clearly point towards a tight market", ING bank said.

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The United States reimposed sanctions on Iran in November after pulling out of a 2015 nuclear accord between Tehran and six world powers past year, though it allowed Tehran's biggest buyers to continue purchasing oil via waivers for another six months.

"The threat of military action with Iran appears to have heightened".

Markets have been buoyed further by Washington's bid to cut Iran's oil exports to zero.

At 466.6 million barrels, US crude oil inventories were at the five-year average for this time of year. The hike in prices came as refiners across Asia seek more Saudi crude for June and July loading after the expiration on May 2 of US -issued waivers permitting imports of Iranian oil.

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Although OPEC and 10 non-OPEC partners had in December, agreed on a new supply accord, which runs from January-June, which exempts Iran, Libya, and Venezuela, Nigeria's output has been on the rise since the beginning of the year.

Besides, a surprising decline of United States oil rigs and a regulatory block on mining more U.S. crudes over the north-eastern shores last week had contribute to the upsurge.

The Gulf oil source also said that based on market conditions so far, current oil production level by OPEC and its allies should be sufficient to bring global oil inventories back to balance by the end of the year.

The EIA forecast output in 2020 will rise by 930,000 bpd to 13.38 million bpd, a bigger increase than it previously estimated. Analysts said that the surge in Iranian imports resulted in China setting a new monthly oil import record, despite the fact that there was refinery maintenance and fuel demand was lukewarm.

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