Bangladesh to import 1.425m tonnes of oil products in 2019

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Bangladesh Petroleum Corp (BPC) on Tuesday issued an international tender to import up to 1.425 million tonnes of refined oil products in the first half of 2019.

This is according to a tender document from the state-owned company.

The company is seeking 1.06 million tonnes to 1.18 million tonnes of gasoil with a sulphur content of 500 parts per million, 80,000 to 120,000 tonnes of 180-centistoke high-sulphur fuel oil, 110,000 tonnes of jet fuel and 15,000 tonnes of 95-octane gasoline.

The tender closes on Oct. 25 and is valid up to Feb. 25, 2019.

Delivery will be carried out in phases over the first half of 2019, a senior BPC official said.

Some volumes will also be imported through separate term deals, he told Reuters, without giving details. BPC resumed issuing tenders for long-term contracts in February 2016 after a 15-year hiatus, during which it negotiated directly with suppliers of fuel products.

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The company wants to move away from direct deals and instead buy at cheaper rates through international tenders.

A shortfall in supplies of natural gas has forced the South Asian country to burn oil, a costlier option, to generate electricity.

Bangladesh typically imports about 3.2 million tonnes of diesel and 2.5 million tonnes of fuel oil annually, making it one of the top 10 such importers in the region.

Currently, BPC has term contracts with eight companies for refined oil product imports.

Suppliers for Bangladesh’s middle distillates contracts include Kuwait Petroleum Corp, Malaysia’s Petroliam Nasional Bhd, Emirates National Oil Co, Philippines National Oil Co, Indonesia’s Bumi Siak Pusako and PetroChina.

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Bangladesh has also signed a 15-year deal with India’s Numaligarh refinery to supply diesel, its first long-term contract with any Indian supplier.

BPC also buys 700,000 tonnes of Murban crude from Abu Dhabi National Oil Co annually and another 700,000 tonnes of Arab Light from Saudi Aramco for its only refinery.

Bangladesh started operations at the country’s first liquefied natural gas (LNG) terminal in August, to offset falling domestic gas production.