SINGAPORE: Pakistan's fuel oil imports dropped to a 1-1/2 year low in October, with demand dipping on ample stocks, official data showed.
Pakistan bought a total of 372,866 tonnes of fuel oil in October, its lowest volume since April last year, figures from the Oil Companies Advisory Committee showed.
High sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) volumes fell 25 per cent from the previous month to around 309,704 tonnes, while imports of low sulphur fuel oil (LSFO) were 50 per cent lower at 63,162 tonnes.
Pakistan State Oil, the country's main buyer, bought less fuel oil for October due to surplus supply from its previous tender cycle.
The company also skipped LSFO purchases as it prepares to switch to winter-grade fuel oil from November.
Pakistan made a record purchase of 1.09 million tonnes of fuel oil in August. However, the country saw increased rainfall around September, which boosted hydropower output and in turn softened demand for fuel oil for power generation, industry sources said.
Imports are expected to recover towards the end of the year, as electricity demand is likely to increase during winter.
PSO last bought 55,000 tonnes of LSFO, for delivery over December to January, from Galana Petroleum at a premium of $95.00-$97.00 a tonne to Middle East quotes, on a cost-and-freight (CFR) basis.
It is seeking up to 650,000 tonnes of HSFO and 165,000 tonnes of LSFO, for delivery over January-February next year.
The tender is due to close on Dec. 12, with offers to remain valid until Dec. 21. It is also due to award a term tender to buy up to 2 million tonnes of HSFO over a 12-month delivery period.