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ENGINE: East of Suez Bunker Fuel Availability Outlook

19 Apr 2023

The following article regarding regional bunker fuel availability outlook for the East of Suez region has been provided by online marine fuels procurement platform ENGINE for publication on Singapore bunkering publication Manifold Times:

18 April 2023

  • Prompt VLSFO and HSFO supply tight in Singapore
  • Bad weather hinders bunkering in Zhoushan
  • LSMGO availability good in Omani ports

 

Singapore

Demand has been slow in Singapore so far this week. All bunker grades remain tight in the port. Lead times of 10-12 days are recommended for VLSFO deliveries – slightly lower than last week’s 11-13 days, while HSFO requires 4-11 days – marginally up from 3-10 days last week.

LSMGO supply is said to be normal there, requiring lead times of 3-7 days – almost unchanged from last week.

Singapore’s residual fuel oil stocks have averaged 6% higher so far this month than in March, according to Enterprise Singapore. Stocks are higher despite a 51% drop in net imports. Exports are up by a massive 55%, while imports are down by 18% to a nine-month low. This has pushed the port’s trade balance further into net exports this month.

Meanwhile, Singapore’s middle distillate stocks have declined by 6% so far this month over March levels.

 

East Asia

Bunker deliveries have resumed at Zhoushan’s slightly more sheltered Xiushandong anchorage and at the port’s inner anchorage of Mazhi on Tuesday after being suspended by rough weather since Sunday, a source says.

Meanwhile, bunkering is still suspended at the port’s Tiaozhoumen and Xiazhimen anchorages. Calmer weather conditions from Friday could allow bunkering to fully resume across anchorages.

Lead times of 5-7 days are generally recommended for VLSFO and HSFO deliveries in the Chinese bunkering hub – unchanged from last week. LSMGO availability is good, with lead times of 3-5 days.

In Hong Kong, HSFO availability has become more limited and subject to enquiry. But availability of VLSFO and LSMGO has improved in the port. Lead times have halved from past week’s 8-9 days to around four days now.

Meanwhile, availability across all bunker fuel grades have improved in South Korean ports. While lead times for all grades have shortened in southern South Korean ports from 3-10 days last week to 3-7 days now, lead times across all fuel grades are even shorter in western South Korean at 4-5 days.

South Korean ports have been pricing VLSFO very competitively recently, which might spur further demand in the days to come, a source says.

Rough weather conditions are forecast between 21-24 April and could trigger intermittent suspensions or disrupt deliveries in the ports in the South Korean ports of Ulsan, Onsan, Daesan, Taean and Yeosu.

Adverse weather conditions are also predicted to hamper bunker deliveries in the Thai port of Koh Sichang between 21-22 April, the Vietnamese port of Hai Phong between 21-23 April, and the Kiwi port of Tauranga on 22 April.

 

South Asia

VLSFO and LSMGO availability remains good in India’s Visakhapatnam and Kandla, with shorter lead time of 2-3 days.

Cochin and Chennai on the southern coast of India also have good availability, while VLSFO and LSMGO remain subject to availability in Mumbai. Both grades remain subject to enquiry in Tuticorin and Haldia ports. One supplier in Paradip is running low on VLSFO stocks.

However, bad weather may disrupt bunkering in India’s west coast ports of Sikka and Kandla between 20-22 April and 19-22 April, respectively, and in the southwestern port of Visakhapatnam on 19-22 April, a source says.

The Sri Lankan ports of Colombo and Trincomalee have good availability of LSMGO, with prompt dates available.

 

Middle East

Prompt availability of all bunker fuel grades is tight in Fujairah as several suppliers are still grappling with loading delays caused by bad weather last week. Demand has been good in the port, a source says. Lead times of 5-7 days are recommended across all grades – similar to last week. However, some suppliers can offer prompt stems for all grades depending on the quantity, a source says.

Lead times of 5-7 days are also advised across all fuel grades in another UAE port of Khorfakkan – unchanged over the last couple of weeks.

The Omani ports of Muscat, Salalah, Sohar and Duqm have LSMGO readily available.

By Tuhin Roy

 

Photo credit and source: ENGINE
Published: 19 April, 2023

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