FUJAIRAH DATA: March bunker sales fell for second month
Bunker fuel sales at the UAE’s Port of Fujairah in March fell 0.6% on the month as crude oil got more expensive and supplies were crimped by a surprise temporary refinery outage.
Total sales fell to 634,045 cu m from 637,585 cu m in February, according to April 20 data from the Fujairah Oil Industry Zone provided exclusively to S&P Global Platts. Sales in February dropped 6.2% from January, the first month of data available.
Front month ICE Brent futures surged to a near 22-month high of $70.05/b on March 8, while it averaged $65.82/b in March, up $3.73/b from February, Platts data showed. Even though compared with a shorter month in February, Singapore by contrast showed a 1.9% rise in March sales on the month, led by a 3.9% jump in low sulfur bunker sales. Singapore is not directly comparable, however, since it reports bunker sales by weight in mt.
An outage in the week of March 7 at Uniper Energy DMCC’s refinery in Fujairah crimped marine bunker supplies, sending the premium for Fujairah marine fuel 0.5%S bunker delivered at the port to a 13-month high against Singapore on March 19. Supplies had rebounded by the end of the month, with Fujairah back at a discount to Singapore, Platts data showed.
The overall decline in Fujairah bunker volume in March was led by a 29.8% drop in marine gasoil bunker sales to 2,456 cu m.
Sales of the high sulfur marine fuel oil 380 CST accounted for 19.8% of total sales, up from 17.9% in February, the data showed. On the month, high sulfur bunker fuel sales bucked the trend and increased 10%.
Sales of low sulfur marine fuel, which includes the LSFO grades 180 CST and 380 CST, fell 2.6% on the month to 481,213 cu m in March. They accounted for 75.89% of total sales, down from 77.51% of the total in February.
Low sulfur marine gasoil sales in March stood at 19,203 cu m, down 1% from the previous month.
Fujairah is the third-largest bunkering hub, and plans to add more information including trading volume and vessels data “in the coming period,” FOIZ Director Salem al-Hmoudi said March 23 when the bunkering data was first published.