Occidental Petroleum has chartered two VLCCs for 12 months at strong rates, according to market sources, as shipowners take advantage of healthy vessel demand.

Period charter rates for tankers have shown strong gains since March, with traders and energy major rushing to fix vessels for floating storage due to an oversupplied oil market.

US-based Occidental is said to fix the 299,000-dwt Sea Ruby (built 2017) from Pantheon Tankers at $87,500 per day. Oslo-based broker Fearnleys says the prevailing one-year rate is $85,000 per day.