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ANZ and Westpac face massive losses in the collapse of a Singapore-based oil trading-empire last week, owing S$3.64 billion (more than A$4 billion) to more than 20 local and international banks.

It is the biggest collapse so far of the slump in global oil demand and prices triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic and the short but silly price war between Russia and Saudi Arabia.

A filing in a Singapore court last Friday about the demise of Hin Leong Trading Pte. Ltd (HLT), one of Asia’s major oil-trading groups, reveals that through their Singapore branches, the two Australian banks are owed S$240.07 million as at April 9, or A$266 million.