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SINGAPORE: Pakistan State Oil issued this week its first fuel oil import tenders for 2019 as the state-owned energy firm prepares for rising summer demand, two trade sources said.

PSO, which uses fuel oil in power generation, is seeking up to 420,000 tonnes of summer grade 180-centistoke (cst) high-sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) for delivery into Port Qasim through two tenders, according to the sources.

In the first tender closing on April 29, PSO is seeking five 70,000-tonne cargoes of HSFO for delivery between May 18 and June 10. The second tender is for a sixth 70,000-tonne cargo for delivery over June 11-30, and closes on May 21, the sources added.

PSO last issued fuel oil import tenders for delivery in December.

It did not immediately respond to Reuters request for comment.

The state-owned company has largely scaled back its fuel oil imports since the end of 2017 as the country turned to liquefied natural gas (LNG) to fuel its power sector.

Before turning to LNG, Pakistan was a major importer of fuel oil with monthly imports averaging at about 400,000 to 650,000 tonnes of fuel oil in 2017.

Published in Dawn, April 24th, 2019