Well-known Chinese news site Sina recently reported that the China Securities Regulatory Commission just announced the schedule for China’s crude oil futures trading. The Shanghai Futures Exchange will open the trading on March 26. The Exchange will allow locking in crude oil futures in local currency – the Chinese currency RMB. In 2017, China became the world’s largest oil importer. The Chinese authorities have been working on setting up the oil futures exchange since 2012. Currently world oil futures are traded under two base standards, West Texas Intermediate (WTI) at the New York Mercantile Exchange and Brent at London’s Intercontinental Exchange Europe (ICE). Today, most of the global oil trading is settled in U.S. Dollars. The RMB settlement currency of the Shanghai Crude (coded INE) may eventually introduce the acceptance of RMB as the global settlement currency for oil, which could ultimately lead to more pricing power over oil.
Source: Sina, February 9, 2018