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Singapore fuel oil stocks dip to 4-week low on thin imports

  • Singapore residual fuel imports from Thailand were at a more than two-year high and those from Brazil were at a nine-week high.
Published June 24, 2021

SINGAPORE: Singapore residual fuel oil inventories slipped 2% in the week to June 23, falling for a second straight week as net import volumes remained weak, official data showed on Thursday.

Onshore fuel oil stocks fell by 574,000 barrels, or about 90,000 tonnes, to a four-week low of 23.4 million barrels, or 3.69 million tonnes, Enterprise Singapore data showed.

Compared with the same period a year earlier, the residual fuel stocks were 12% lower but were on par with the 2021 weekly average of 23.24 million barrels.

Singapore net imports of fuel oil were down 35%, adding to a 47% drop in the week before, to a four-week low of 323,000 tonnes - less than half of the 2021 weekly average of 730,000 tonnes. Weekly figures, however, are volatile.

The largest net imports were from Malaysia at 364,000 tonnes, followed by Brazil at 166,000 tonnes, Thailand at 89,000 tonnes and the United Arab Emirates at 68,000 tonnes.

Singapore residual fuel imports from Thailand were at a more than two-year high and those from Brazil were at a nine-week high.

Singapore's top fuel oil net exports destinations were China at 120,000 tonnes, the most in five months, followed by Bangladesh at 86,000 tonnes and South Africa at 36,000 tonnes.

The rise in exports to China were likely supported by growing demand for fuel oil feedstock by China's independent refineries, trade sources said, which resumed imports after a nearly five-year hiatus, as Beijing's crackdown on crude oil quota trading along with new fuel taxes limit refinery feedstock options.

Fuel oil flows into east Asia, most of which come to Singapore, were assessed at between 5 million tonnes and 5.5 million tonnes in June, steady-to-higher from the 5.11 million tonnes in May and firmly higher from the 2020 monthly average of 4.82 million tonnes, the latest assessments by Refinitiv Oil Research on Tuesday showed.

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