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Asia Distillates-Jet fuel cracks post weekly rise, cash discounts narrow

    SINGAPORE, Jan 29 (Reuters) - Asian refining margins for jet fuel eased on Friday, but
posted a weekly rise, as the aviation market awaits a gradual pick-up in flight schedules in
coming months with COVID-19 vaccinations helping push travellers take back to the skies.
    But with fresh coronavirus outbreaks in countries such as China and Vietnam, especially
ahead of the Lunar New Year holidays in February, the regional aviation sector is expected to
miss out the seasonal demand boost this year, trade sources said.
    Refining margins, also known as cracks, for jet fuel dipped to $3.53 per barrel
over Dubai crude during Asian trading hours, compared with $3.74 per barrel a day earlier.
    The cracks, however, have gained about 4% this week, Refinitiv Eikon data showed, although
they are currently at their weakest levels for this time of the year on record.
    "Global jet markets should continue to strengthen gradually in the first quarter of 2021, as
low supplies and the demand optimism stemming from the rollout of vaccination programmes
outweigh current demand weakness," consultancy Energy Aspects said in a monthly note.
    "Already low flight numbers limit further downside to demand while supply remains
constrained by low runs amid weak margins... Mass inoculation programmes will be in full swing
in a number of countries by the end of H1 21, lifting market optimism for a swifter demand
recovery this year."
    Cash differentials for jet fuel JET-SIN-DIF were at a discount of 21 cents per barrel to
Singapore quotes on Friday, compared with a discount of 23 cents per barrel on Thursday.
    
    MAJORITY OF PILOTS NO LONGER FLYING -SURVEY
    - More than half of the world's airline pilots are no longer flying for a living amid the
plunge in demand during the pandemic, according to a new survey, and those that are still flying
feel less valued by their employers.
    - A poll of nearly 2,600 pilots by UK-based GOOSE Recruitment and industry publication
FlightGlobal, released on Thursday, found only 43% were doing the job they had trained for, with
30% unemployed, 17% furloughed and 10% in non-flying roles.
    
    ARA STOCKS
    - Gasoil stocks held independently in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) refining and
storage hub STK-GO-ARA dropped 3.4% to 2.6 million tonnes in the week to Jan. 28, data from
Dutch consultancy Insights Global showed.
    - The data showed ARA jet fuel inventories STK-JET-ARA dipped 2.9% to 903,000 tonnes.
    
    SINGAPORE CASH DEALS
    - Four gasoil deals, no jet fuel trades
    
    OTHER NEWS
    - Britain is banning direct passenger flights to and from the United Arab Emirates from
Friday, shutting down the world's busiest international airline route from Dubai to London.

    
    ASSESSMENTS
 MID-DISTILLATES                                                                       
 CASH ($/T)            ASIA CLOSE       Change   % Change   Prev Close  RIC
 Spot Gas Oil 0.5%               58.82     -0.2      -0.34       59.02  GO-SIN
 GO 0.5 Diff                     -1.67     0.01      -0.60       -1.68  GO-SIN-DIF
 Spot Gas Oil 0.25%              58.92     -0.2      -0.34       59.12  GO25-SIN
 GO 0.25 Diff                    -1.57     0.01      -0.63       -1.58  GO25-SIN-DIF
 Spot Gas Oil 0.05%              59.19     -0.2      -0.34       59.39  GO005-SIN
 GO 0.05 Diff                     -1.3     0.01      -0.76       -1.31  GO005-SIN-DIF
 Spot Gas Oil 0.001%              60.4    -0.07      -0.12       60.47  GO10-SIN
 GO 0.001 Diff                   -0.09     0.15     -62.50       -0.24  GO10-SIN-DIF
 Spot Jet/Kero                   57.87    -0.19      -0.33       58.06  JET-SIN
 Jet/Kero Diff                   -0.21     0.02      -8.70       -0.23  JET-SIN-DIF
                                                                                       
 For a list of derivatives prices, including margins,                                  
 please double click the RICs below.                                    
 Brent M1                                                                              
 Gasoil M1                                                                             
 Gasoil M1/M2                                                                          
 Gasoil M2                                                                             
 Regrade M1                                                                            
 Regrade M2                                                                            
 Jet M1                                                                                
 Jet M1/M2                                                                             
 Jet M2                                                                                
 Gasoil 500ppm-Dubai                                                                   
 Cracks M1                                                              
 Gasoil 500ppm-Dubai                                                                   
 Cracks M2                                                              
 Jet Cracks M1                                                                         
 Jet Cracks M2                                                                         
 East-West M1                                                                          
 East-West M2                                                                          
 LGO M1                                                                                
 LGO M1/M2                                                                             
 LGO M2                                                                                
 Crack LGO-Brent M1                                                                    
 Crack LGO-Brent M2                                                                    
 
 (Reporting by Koustav Samanta;)
  
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