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ENGINE: Americas Bunker Fuel Availability Outlook

07 Oct 2022

The following article regarding bunker fuel availability in the Americas region has been provided by online marine fuel procurement platform ENGINE for post on Singapore bunkering publication Manifold Times:

6 October 2022

By Nithin Chandran

  • Bunkering resumes across Florida following Hurricane Ian
  • Houston prices recover from multi-month lows
  • High winds trigger suspension in Zona Comun

North America

Prompt VLSFO and LSMGO grades are readily available in the Houston area, New York and off the US Gulf Coast. Houston’s VLSFO and HSFO benchmarks fell to multi-month lows last week, but have recovered some of these losses mainly due to Brent’s rebound.

Houston’s HSFO price fell to rare discounts to Rotterdam’s in rent days, before flipping back to a small premium now. Its HSFO availability has held up better than Rotterdam’s, where prompt supply can be hard to find.

Houston’s bunker fuel availability has remained normal in recent weeks, compared to other bunker hubs where lead times can be more unpredictable.

Prompt LSMGO can be tight in the Galveston Offshore Lightering Area (GOLA). The earliest delivery dates with two suppliers are about 4-5 days ahead. One supplier expects LSMGO resupply this week, which should ease some pressure.

Port operations and bunkering resumed in Florida’s Port Tampa Bay last weekend, following Hurricane Ian that hit the port last Wednesday. Several suppliers have resumed offering deliveries for prompt dates and for dates further out in Port Tampa Bay. But bunker deliveries by truck have been difficult to find this week as some trucks have been deployed for disaster relief work after Hurricane Ian struck, sources say.

Supply remains tight across all fuel grades in US West Coast ports. Some suppliers in Long Beach and Los Angeles are fully booked for prompt dates. A lead time of at least 10 days is generally recommended to ensure timely deliveries.

VLSFO supply for prompt dates in San Francisco is tight. The earliest delivery date with a supplier is 6-8 days out, another can offer deliveries from 20 October.

Availability remains steady across all grades in Mexico’s Manzanillo. Recommended lead times for HSFO, VLSFO and LSMGO are about five days out.

Caribbean and Latin America

All grades are tight for prompt dates in Panama’s Cristobal. The earliest delivery dates with two suppliers are about 8-9 days for VLSFO and LSMGO. Several suppliers have insisted that deliveries should instead be made in Balboa, where prompt VLSFO and LSMGO grades are slightly easier to find, sources say.

VLSFO and LSMGO availability is tight for prompt dates off Trinidad. The earliest delivery date with two suppliers is about 6-7 days out. Another can offer LSMGO only.

Availability of VLSFO and LSMGO is normal in Colombia’s Santa Marta. The earliest delivery date with a supplier there is about three days out.

VLSFO supply is normal in Brazil’s Rio Grande. A supplier can offer deliveries for prompt dates, sources say.

Prompt VLSFO and LSMGO is tight at the Zona Comun anchorage in Argentina. Recommended lead times are about 7-8 days. Bunker operations were suspended on Wednesday at Zona Comun amid high winds. Calmer weather conditions could allow bunkering to resume on Thursday.

But wind speeds are set to pick up again with potential bunker disruptions from Friday evening through to Sunday.


Photo credit and source: ENGINE
Published: 7 October, 2022

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