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ENGINE: Americas Bunker Fuel Availability Outlook

11 Nov 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:

10 November 2022

  • Hurricane Nicole hits Florida ports
  • VLSFO and LSMGO readily available in Houston
  • Bunkers super tight in Panama

North America

Several suppliers in the Houston area can deliver VLSFO and LSMGO on prompt grades. Buyers are able to secure the grades for prompt dates without any major hassle, partly as Houston has a large pool of suppliers, sources say.

VLSFO and LSMGO availability is also normal for prompt dates in New York, while HSFO availability can be patchy in both New York and Houston. Only certain suppliers can accommodate prompt HSFO stems, sources say.

Prompt VLSFO is available in New Orleans, while LSMGO is slightly tight to secure for prompt dates.

All grades remain tight for prompt dates in the twin ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles on the US West Coast. A longer lead time of at least 10 days is generally recommended to ensure full coverage from all suppliers. Lead times can be even longer and unpredictable for HSFO in both ports as the grade is offered by fewer suppliers, sources say.

Port operations and bunkering is still suspended in several ports in Florida, after Hurricane Nicole made landfall on the east coast of Florida. The US Coast Guard has set port condition ZULU in the Port of Miami, Port Everglades, Jacksonville, Port Tampa Bay and many others. Port condition ZULU mandates port authorities to cease all operations.

Jacksonville Port Authority says the port is likely to reopen on Friday, but this will depend on the US Coast Guard’s approval.

Bunker availability continues to be steady for all fuel grades in Mexico’s Manzanillo. Recommended lead times for HSFO, VLSFO and LSMGO are about five days out, while prompt stems can be accommodated, sources say.

Caribbean and Latin America

Bunker operations in the Bahamas’ Freeport have been suspended since Wednesday due to Hurricane Nicole. Calmer weather conditions from Friday should allow suppliers to resume operations.

VLSFO and LSMGO availability is getting tighter off Trinidad. Some suppliers that were offering deliveries for prompt dates throughout last week are now advising lead times of at least five days, sources say.

All grades are tight for prompt dates in Panama’s Balboa and Cristobal. Several suppliers are hesitant to confirm delivery dates for HSFO, VLSFO and LSMGO due to tight availability. The earliest delivery date for VLSFO with a supplier in Balboa is about eight days out.

Lead times can be longer in Cristobal than in Balboa due to limited product availability among suppliers, sources say.

VLSFO and LSMGO availability is normal in Colombia’s Cartagena and Santa Marta. One supplier can supply for prompt dates in both ports, while another requires three days of lead time.

All grades are readily available in Peru’s Callao. A supplier can supply the grades for prompt dates.

VLSFO is readily available in Argentina’s Zona Comun anchorage. The earliest delivery date with a supplier is about 3-4 days ahead. Another requires 5-6 days of lead time.

By Nithin Chandran


Photo credit and source: ENGINE

Published: 11 November, 2022

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