Dubai and Oman to develop Middle East sour crude futures

The Sultanate of Oman’s Ministry of Oil and Gas (MOG) and the Dubai Mercantile Exchange (DME) are working to develop a new Middle East sour crude futures contract backed by oil produced in Oman, which is set for launch in the fourth quarter this year.

The announcement follows a memorandum of understanding signed in February, under which a working group was created to look into developing Middle East sour crude oil futures contracts. The working group consisted of senior professionals from Oman’s Ministry of Oil and Gas and Ministry of Finance, the Petroleum Development of Oman, the New York Mercantile Exchange (Nymex) and the DME.

Nasser bin Khamis Al Jashmi, undersecretary of oil and gas for Oman, said in a statement: “The creation of a successful, physically linked Middle East sour crude oil futures contract is a concept we sincerely support, given our role in the pricing of Middle Eastern crude. In this respect, we believe the timing is opportune to lead this initiative and very much look forward to receiving market feedback on the contract.”

The DME is a joint venture between Tatweer, a member of Dubai Holding, and Nymex. Dubai Holding is a real estate development company owned by the Dubai government.

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