HPCL sells 25,000-30,000T high-sulphur fuel oil
Singapore, Dec 5: Hindustan Petroleum Corp. Ltd. (HPCL) sold via tender 25,000-30,000 tonnes of December-loading high-sulphur fuel oil at steeper discounts, amid lower Indian export volumes for next month, industry sources said on Tuesday.
The 380-centistoke (cst) cargo, for Dec. 19-21 loading from the refiner's Vizag terminal, was sold at a discount of around a tonne to Singapore spot quotes, on a free-on-board (FOB) basis, down from a - discount previously.
''Despite the lower strike price, it is still higher than expected. Most players went in at discounts of around a tonne, with freight rates at around a tonne. Vitol can afford to bid higher because they probably have a time-charter vessel,'' a Singapore-based Western trader said.
Export volumes for December via tenders, including the current deal and an outstanding tender from Indian Oil Corp. (IOC), stand at 190,000 tonnes, down 46 percent from November and well below the monthly average of 265,500 tonnes.
The weakening East Asian market and firmer domestic demand, due to seasonal factors, are the main reasons for the lower December export volumes, traders said.
HPCL last sold a similar cargo, for November loading, at a discount of - a tonne to Singapore spot quotes, below typical traded levels of - discounts, but above levels when the market was in the throes of its worst-ever slump two to three months ago.
Total Indian volumes for the year, including the current IOC offer, are at 3.19 million tonnes, well above last year's 1.83 million tonnes.