The stockpiles of refined oil products at the oil trading and bunkering hub of Fujairah dropped for a third consecutive week, the longest stretch in a year, dragged by a 13% slump in gasoline and other light distillates amid signs that product was moving to Singapore.
Total stockpiles stood at 26.886 million barrels on July 13, down 1.7% on the week, the Fujairah Oil Industry Zone said July 15 in a report. The total was the lowest since May 4, according to inventory data compiled by S&P Global Platts since January 2017. The last time stockpiles fell three or more weeks in a row was the five-week drop in 2019 from May 27 to July 1.
Light distillate stockpiles fell to 6.267 million barrels, the lowest since April 20.
Middle East cargoes of both gasoline and naphtha have been moving to Singapore, leading the city-state’s commercial onshore light distillate stockpiles to a 17-month high on July 8, Platts previously reported.
Singapore also saw a surge in the imports of naphtha, reformate and other blendstocks from the Middle East during the July 2-8 period, including 186,928 mt from Kuwait, 52,480 mt from the UAE and 36,711 mt from Qatar, according to data from Enterprise Singapore.
Light distillates in the Fujairah report include gasoline, blending components such as reformate and alkylate, and naphtha along with other light petrochemical feedstocks and condensates.
Arbitrage cargoes have been moving into Singapore from outside Asia, including gasoline flows from the Middle East, according to Platts.
The price of FOB Singapore 92 RON gasoline, the region’s most liquid benchmark, has averaged $44.81/b in July to date, up from the $42.79/b average in June and $30.84/b in May, Platts data showed. Pakistan, known to buy gasoline from Fujairah, has also been tendering for the fuel.
Middle distillate stockpiles climbed 12% in the July 7-13 period to 4.314 million barrels, the first increase in four weeks. The category includes jet fuel, gasoil, diesel, marine bunker gasoil and kerosene.
Heavy distillates and residues, or fuels used in marine bunkers and for power generation, were little changed at 16.305 million barrels.