Singapore- based CEFC oil trading team 'quits'

BEIJING • Singapore-listed CEFC International's oil trading team resigned over the weekend, three sources with direct knowledge of the matter said.

The Singapore-based team, including the company's vice-president of trading Liu Lei and six members hired by Mr Liu over the past six months, decided to quit because of an "internal policy shift" by the company, one of the sources said.

CEFC International, which is involved in petroleum trading and investment in oil and gas assets, expanded its oil trading team after hiring Mr Liu, formerly deputy head of global products trading with PetroChina, early last year.

The trading team had expected to concentrate on oil trading but was instructed to switch its focus to merger and acquisition opportunities in oil assets, as well as serving as a fuel procurement base for Shanghai-based company CEFC China Energy, the source said.

"There seems to be a lack of coordination internally between the top management," the source said, who did not want to be identified.

The traders declined to elaborate. Mr Liu declined to comment.

Mr Dave Tan, CEFC Interna- tional's investment relation manager, did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

CEFC China Energy has been expanding its oil business in recent years, agreeing last year to take control of the international arm of Kazakhstan's state oil and gas firm and launching a major oil storage base in China. Over the past two years, the firm has brought on board nearly a dozen senior and retired executives from Chinese state energy giants.

The Singapore Exchange last year urged investors and shareholders to be cautious in dealing with CEFC International's shares, noting that stock buying had been concentrated in a small number of offshore accounts.

REUTERS

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on July 12, 2016, with the headline 'Singapore- based CEFC oil trading team 'quits''. Print Edition | Subscribe