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Argus Media: Turkish bunker firms upbeat on IMO fuel supply

03 Jun 2019

Global energy and commodity price reporting agency Argus Media in May provided a IMO 2020 related update on the Turkish bunkering industry:

Turkey's bunker suppliers are confident they can meet their market's requirements for marine fuels compliant with the International Maritime Organisation's (IMO) sulphur cap coming into force in 2020.

Turkey is one of the largest bunkering hubs in the Mediterranean. And the country's major bunker suppliers Petrol Ofisi, Socar, Arkas, Energy Petrol and CYE told the shipping chamber of Turkey yesterday they will all provide IMO compliant fuels in 2020.

The suppliers also said they can also supply higher volumes of marine gasoil (MGO) if shipowners initially opt for this tested option, instead of running their ships on new 0.5pc sulphur marine fuels. MGO's share in Turkey could more than double in 2020, market participants said.

The fuel accounted for around 15-25pc of total demand at Istanbul ports last year, while high-sulphur fuel oil accounted for the remainder.

But the majority of marine fuel suppliers in Turkey lack storage capabilities, which may lead to an increase in the market share of largest companies in 2020. Suppliers will have to increase imports of marine fuels in 2020, because Turkish refiner Tupras and Azerbaijan state-controlled Socar's refinery will not produce IMO compliant fuels.

The majority of bunker companies only supply transit ships as these sales are exempt from tax.

In the Mediterranean, Italian refiners Saras and Eni, Spanish integrated firms Cepsa and Repsol have said they will produce 0.5pc marine fuels. UK-China joint venture Petroineos will also supply 0.5pc sulphur fuels from its 210,000 b/d Lavera refinery, while Greek refiner Hellenic signalled it might output compliant fuel oil from next year.

Bunker sales in Turkish ports — mostly in Istanbul — reached 3mn t last year, according to the suppliers.

This makes Istanbul the largest bunkering hubs in the Mediterranean behind Gibraltar, according to Argus estimates. But sales fell in the first quarter of 2019, as shipping slowed on weaker trade, market participants said.

Source: Argus Media
Published: 3 June 2019


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