FUJAIRAH, Oil products stockpiles at the Port of Fujairah outside of the Strait of Hormuz in the Arabian Gulf dropped to a two-month low, with some traders forced to buy marine bunkers after holding off because of escalating prices.
Total inventory was 21.183 million barrels on Feb. 8, down 9 per cent from a week earlier and the lowest since Nov. 30, according to Fujairah Oil Industry Zone, or FOIZ, data released Feb. 10 exclusively to S&P Global Platts. It was the biggest percentage weekly decline since Oct. 26.
Middle distillates led the way with a 15 percent decline over the week to Feb. 8, the highest drop in six months. The inventories came to 4.404 million barrels, a three-week low. The category includes gasoil, diesel and jet fuel.
Stockpiles of heavy distillates including fuel for power generation and marine bunkers stood at 9.786 million barrels as of Feb. 8, down 9 per cent from a week earlier and the lowest since Nov. 30.
Traders have held off buying marine bunkers because of rising Brent prices but have been forced to take shipments to keep ocean going vessels fueled up, according to Apurva Mali, founder of bunker supplier Masc Co. DMCC in Dubai. “There is a hope prices will go down after oil has steadied after the longest run of gains in the last two years.”
Fujairah-delivered marine 0.5 per cent bunker fuel was assessed at $494/mt on Feb. 9, up 7 per cent from $461/mt a week earlier, according to Platts data.
Light distillates including gasoline and naphtha stocks fell to 6.993 million barrels as of Feb. 8, down 5 per cent from a week earlier and the lowest in three weeks.
All 11 commercial terminal operators at Fujairah participate in the weekly inventory report, according to FOIZ. The storage volumes include activities such as blending and refining. FOIZ has provided the inventory data to Platts since January 2017.
Source: Emirates News Agency