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Despite the relative briskness in enquiry East of Suez this week, rates for both the LR1 and LR2 vessels trading from the MEG to Japan declined. The MR sector on this trade route fared slightly better this week, with owners able to hold onto rate gains made last week. Elsewhere in the MR market, the buoyant period seen last week cooled slightly this week, with the rate on the transatlantic UKC-USAC route softening to WS 160 as activity levels slowed. In the Handy sector, the absence of ice conditions in the Baltic this year held the rate on the route to the UKC at WS 175.