Petrobras considers possibility to expand bunker sales in the world market

21/02/2019

Petrobras believes that it will be possible to expand its bunker marketing in the world market by reducing the sulfur content in marine fuels established by the International Maritime Organization (IMO). The company claims that it is practically already in line with the new international rules, which predict a sulfur index below 0.5% as of January 1, 2020. The company believes that the reduction in established indices, in addition to environmental gains, is an opportunity for the company, which is well positioned in the world market for fuel oil. The state-owned company is the main supplier of fuel for ships in Brazil and today produces about 2% of the internationally traded bunker.

The company considers itself prepared for the increase in demand and confirmed that it assesses issues related to refining and logistics for production and segregation of the new bunker fuel. Petrobras projects that the market and price changes generated by IMO 2020 will have an impact worldwide and should cause some changes in the oil profile processed in the refining units. “As one of the main producers and exporters of low-sulfur (BTE) fuel oil, Petrobras expects a recovery in the international market of this derivative and of Brazilian low-sulfur oils, with the entry into force of the new rule “.

The production of bunker with 0,5% of sulfur in Brazil must be made possible by the greater participation of the pre-salt in the units of atmospheric distillation and the vacuum of the refineries. Petrobras has been working on production planning for the coming years and hopes that refineries with high conversion and treatment power will be able to process heavier and higher sulfur oils, which will have more attractive prices starting in 2020. sulfur of the pre-salt oil, in turn, does not imply modifications in its refining process, nor does it require the application of chemical processes or mixture to reduce the sulfur content.

The profile of customers who buy Petrobras bunker is from long-distance foreign and national shipowners, national coastline shipowners and other ships in the service of the company. According to the company, about 70% of the volume sold last year was for the service of ships from foreign shipowners. In 2016 and 2017, the annual sale of the bunker by Petrobras was, on average, four million tons.

Brazilian shipping companies estimate that, in the first instance, there should be no risks for the operation of the Brazilian flag vessels operating in cabotage, nor an increase in the production cost of the bunker that Petrobras is expected to deliver from January 2020. ”  There is no expectation of shortage of fuel for cabotage or even for long-haul vessels that wish to supply in Brazilian ports, “says the National Union of Shipping Companies (Syndarma).

 

The caveat is that even without having its costs increased, the company follows international prices. Reducing the sulfur content in the fuel should lead to a 40% increase in the cost of world shipping, according to estimates by the international maritime community. “We believe today’s large suppliers will continue to dominate the market. However, there seems to be a great opportunity for Petrobras to expand the supply of bunkers, due to the quality of its fuel, “says Syndarma.

Petrobras reiterates that it prices the bunker according to international benchmarks, accompanying the price variations up and down. “The price of the Petrobras bunker is competitive with the largest bunker hubs in the world. If there is an increase in demand, internal or external, and if there is economic and logistical feasibility, the company is able to expand its market, “Petrobras said. The current planning of Petrobras does not provide bunker imports.

A public hearing on the new rules of the IMO, organized by the National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels (ANP), is scheduled for February 27. Participants will discuss the specifications of fuels intended for water use by lowering the sulfur content limit of marine fuel oils for vessels that do not have an exhaust gas cleaning system.

The profile of customers who buy Petrobras bunker is from long-distance foreign and national shipowners, national coastline shipowners and other ships in the service of the company. According to the company, about 70% of the volume sold last year was for the service of ships from foreign shipowners. In 2016 and 2017, the annual sale of the bunker by Petrobras was, on average, four million tons.

Brazilian shipping companies estimate that, in the first instance, there should be no risks for the operation of the Brazilian flag vessels operating in cabotage, nor an increase in the production cost of the bunker that Petrobras is expected to deliver from January 2020. ” principle, there is no expectation of shortage of fuel for cabotage or even for long-haul vessels that wish to supply in Brazilian ports, “says the National Union of Shipping Companies (Syndarma).

 

The caveat is that even without having its costs increased, the company follows international prices. Reducing the sulfur content in the fuel should lead to a 40% increase in the cost of world shipping, according to estimates by the international maritime community. “We believe today’s large suppliers will continue to dominate the market. However, there seems to be a great opportunity for Petrobras to expand the supply of bunkers, due to the quality of its fuel, “says Syndarma.

Petrobras reiterates that it prices the bunker according to international benchmarks, accompanying the price variations up and down. “The price of the Petrobras bunker is competitive with the largest bunker hubs in the world. If there is an increase in demand, internal or external, and if there is economic and logistical feasibility, the company is able to expand its market, “Petrobras said. The current planning of Petrobras does not provide bunker imports.

A public hearing on the new rules of the IMO, organized by the National Agency of Petroleum, Natural Gas and Biofuels (ANP), is scheduled for February 27. Participants will discuss the specifications of fuels intended for maritime use by lowering the sulfur content limit of marine fuel oils for vessels that do not have an exhaust gas cleaning system.

Source: Portos e Navios

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