FUJAIRAH, 17th June, 2020 (WAM/S&P Platts) — Stockpiles of oil products at the UAE’s East Coast port of Fujairah dropped for a second consecutive week amid signs of a rebound in trading.
Stockpiles stood at 30.113 million barrels as of 15th June, down 1.3 percent on the week, after falling 0.7 percent a week earlier, data from the Fujairah Oil Industry Zone, FOIZ, showed today. Stockpiles had been climbing to record highs for most of May and early June amid curbed demand for gasoline, jet fuel and marine bunkers.
At Prostar Capital, which owns two storage companies in Fujairah, movement of crude oil and products in and out of terminals dropped 35 percent in February and March, and is now about 10 percent below the January turnover, Tony Quinn, operating partner of Prostar in Singapore, said.
“I would say in another month we’ll be back to normal volumes in terms of throughput,” Quinn said. “The first pick-up was in China toward mid-May, and we’re seeing more volumes to China, which has helped Fujairah as well.” He estimated Prostar’s jointly-owned Fujairah storage companies — Fujairah Oil Terminal and GTI Fujairah — account for about 20 percent of Fujairah’s independent crude oil and refined products storage.
Light distillates, which include gasoline, naphtha and other light petrochemical feedstock, slipped 10 percent week on week to 7.487 million barrels, the biggest decline since the week ended 4th May.
“The East of Suez gasoline market continued to find support as the gradual process of easing domestic movement restrictions continued, leading to signs of a demand recovery across various countries,” Platts reported in a commentary on inventories today.
Middle distillates, which include jet fuel, kerosene, gasoil and marine bunker gasoil, jumped 10 percent on the week to 5.536 million barrels, resuming gains for the 11th time in 12 weeks.
Heavy distillates and residues, which include fuels for marine bunkers and for power generation, fell less than 1 percent week on week to 17.09 million barrels, after hitting a record high a week ago.
Stockpiles of both middle and heavy distillates hit all-time highs earlier this month, while stocks of light distillates are well below the record high 11.975 million set on 28th January, 2019, according to the data compiled by Platts, which is the official publisher of Fujairah’s inventory data.