The following article regarding regional bunker fuel availability outlooks for East of Suez ports with special attention to availability in Singapore has been provided by online marine fuels procurement platform ENGINE for publication on Singapore bunkering publication Manifold Times:
3 August 2021
HSFO380 availability has improved to shorten lead times in Singapore, and plentiful supply has kept South Korean VLSFO prices at regional discounts this week.
VLSFO remains tight for prompt dates in Singapore, while HSFO380 has become more readily available after months of tight supplies. Both grades require bookings around 7-8 days ahead now.
LSMGO can be procured with shorter lead times of 4-5 days in Singapore.
Lower net imports drove down Singapore’s residual fuel oil inventories by 6% last week. Imports fell to two-month lows and exports surged to nine-month highs. The inventories came down from multi-week highs in the preceding week.
Plentiful availability of VLSFO and LSMGO has weighed on South Korean price. VLSFO prices in Busan, Ulsan and Yeosu moved to rare discounts to the regional bunkering hubs of Singapore and Zhoushan on 23 July, and have held at discounts since.
South Korean refiners ramped up production from June to meet rising demand for various oil products as its economy recovers from mobility restrictions. This has yielded more gasoil, and more residual fuel oil as a by-product.
Availability of both fuel oil and gasoil for South Korea’s domestic bunker market has improved considerably and both products are readily available. Recommended lead times for VLSFO and LSMGO have shortened to just 1-2 days in Ulsan and other ports on South Korean southern coast.
Fuel availability has improved in Zhoushan and Shanghai since typhoon In-Fa suspended bunkering in the ports until the middle of last week. Bunker suppliers have worked through backlogs to bring lead times for VLSFO and LSMGO back down to pre-typhoon levels of 2-3 days. Lead times for HSFO380 can vary in the Chinese ports, and are typically longer than for low sulphur fuels.
Fujairah’s HSFO380 supply capacity was reduced last month, when one supplier exited the market to leave just three suppliers carrying the grade.
Fujairah’s residual fuel oil and heavy distillate stocks were drawn down to three-month lows of 11.21 million bbls on 26 July, Fujairah Oil Industry Zone and S&P Global Platts data showed.
More limited supply capacity and lower fuel oil inventories may have joined to boost Fujairah’s HSFO380 price against Singapore, and it has been trading at a wider premium of more than $10/mt over Singapore in recent days.
VLSFO and LSMGO supplies have run dry in Port Suez, after tightening through July. LSMGO is also tight in Jeddah, while VLSFO is more readily available there.
Djibouti has good availability of both fuel grades, but at significant price premiums over Port Suez and Jeddah.
Photo credit and source: ENGINE
Published: 4 August, 2021
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