Refinery Closures To Affect Bunker Fuel Supply

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  • The recent earthquake in northeast Japan has interrupted refinery operations which could impact the supply of bunker fuel.
  • Rough sea conditions during the week have also pressured the country’s bunker fuel stocks.
  • Transfer delays caused by a temporary suspension of berthing operations have resulted in a lack of bunker fuel components at blending facilities.

Japanese marine fuel supplies may be limited by a halt to refinery operations after a 7.3-magnitude earthquake hit northeast Japan on 13 February, reports Argus Media.

Distillation units affected

According to commodity price reporting agency Argus Media, some crude distillation units as well as secondary facilities at plants have been affected.

Bunker fuel supplies are not affected by the disruptions so far, but their availability may tighten with falling inventories,” according to the report.

Some of the units providing marine fuel components may take time to return to full operations, it added citing market participants.

Bad weather, rough seas and temporary berthing restrictions may also be adding to pressure on bunker fuel stocks, the report said.

Five CDUs with a combined capacity of 720,000 b/d are off line in Japan because of various reasons such as the earthquake, existing turnarounds, the impact of earlier fires and other unknown factors.

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Source: Argus Media

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