Petrolimex, Vietnam’s top fuel importer and distributor, is usually a net importer of oil products and has not sold gasoil or gasoline before, two of the sources said. But the company turned seller for the first time after being awarded a tender by Sri Lanka’s state-owned firm Ceylon Petroleum Corp (Ceypetco) for 310,000 barrels of gasoil and gasoline, to be delivered on Nov. 2.
It is unclear where Petrolimex will source the barrels from. The company has a term contract with suppliers including South Korea’s SK Energy and Hyundai Oilbank, Elico Oil, Unipec, PetroChina and Winson Oil to buy about 6.29 million barrels of gasoil for this year, mainly for domestic use.
While Petrolimex has had a representative office in Singapore since the late 1990s, it set up its subsidiary trading company Petrolimex Singapore in late 2009, and only recently started exploring trading opportunities in gasoil and gasoline, traders said.
Last year, it sold fuel oil for the first time by supplying Bangladesh Petroleum Corp. The company is looking to participate in other tenders to supply the oil products in the near future, a source close to the matter said.
Vietnam’s demand for gasoil, which is used by the country’s agricultural, industrial and transport sectors, has fallen over the past few months as lower economic growth hampered domestic demand.
Petrolimex skipped its quarterly imports of oil products for two consecutive quarters this year. (Reporting by Jessica Jaganathan; Editing by Clarence Fernandez)
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