UPDATE 1-PetroChina told no Sudanese crude at new plant-sources

* Plant shifts to more use of West African oil for now

* Likely transfer of refinery assets to parent CNPC

* Sudan now China’s No.6 crude supplier – customs

(Adds official no comment, details)

BEIJING, July 5 (BestGrowthStock) – The U.S. government has told
China’s largest oil and gas firm PetroChina (0857.HK: )(PTR.N: ) not
to process Sudanese crude at its new refinery in south China,
three industry sources told Reuters on Monday.

“There is a freeze on Sudanese crude into the new plant, as
it is under the U.S.-listed PetroChina, not the parent company
CNPC which produces crude in Sudan,” said an industry official
with direct knowledge of the issue.

Washington imposed economic sanctions on Sudan in 1997.

PetroChina’s Hong Kong-based spokesman declined to comment.

PetroChina started test runs last week at the 200,000
barrels-per-day Qinzhou refinery in southwestern Guangxi region,
which borders Vietnam, the sources said.

Because of the political pressure, PetroChina has for now
shifted to more West African crudes for the new plant, which is
slated to enter commercial productions around the end of August.

It was not immediately known how the freeze on Sudan oil
could be executed, as the African state is already China’s
sixth-largest crude supplier, with daily exports of 252,000
barrels in the first five months of this year, as reported by
official Chinese customs data [O/CHINA1].

The refinery, PetroChina’s first major downstream foothold
in southern China, is configured to treat low-sulphur, acidic
crudes like Sudanese Dar Blend and Nile Blend.

“One possible way out is for PetroChina to transfer the
refinery assets to parent company CNPC,” said a second senior
industry source.
(Reporting by Chen Aizhu; editing by Michael Urquhart and Sue
Thomas)

UPDATE 1-PetroChina told no Sudanese crude at new plant-sources