Tankers facing delays at Indian oil port Haldia: sources
Singapore (Platts)--16Feb2011/547 am EST/1047 GMT
Tankers scheduled to load and discharge fuel oil and clean petroleum
products at India's key east coast port of Haldia are facing delays of between
three to 10 days, shipping agency and trading sources said Wednesday.
"There are only three jetties to handle all sorts of product and crude
cargoes. The first jetty [HOJ 1] has seen a sudden increase of import and
export vessels," a source with knowledge of the current situation at Haldia
told Platts over phone.
According to arrival details of vessels calling at the Haldia port, the
Chemtrans Petri, a Small Range product tanker which arrived on February 1 has
yet to load its 15,000 mt fuel oil cargo.
The other vessels that are currently waiting at the anchorage are the
Lourdes [to discharge fuel oil], Triumph [to discharge kerosene and load jet
fuel], Bunga Kemboja [to discharge ammonia], Norient Saturn [to load naphtha],
Jag Aabha [to discharge gasoil], Southern Unicorn [to load gasoline], Jag
Prachi [to load fuel oil] and Vinashin Melody [to discharge naphtha].
According to the website of India's ministry of communication, the port
has three oil jetties -- the Haldia Oil Jetty 1 (HOJ 1], HOJ 2 and HOJ 3 --
with an overall capacity of 16 million tons to handle crude, products and
A Haldia port official said that there were delays at the port but it is
not a cause for worry.
"You can't have 10 tankers berthing at the same time. The delays are not
very substantial but there are some delays. It is not an alarming situation,"
the official said.
The official also added that one of the jetties, used for crude
discharge, is currently idle with crude cargoes intended for Haldia being
unloaded at the Paradip port, which in turn is sent through pipelines to
IOC's refinery in Haldia.
"At HOJ 1, vessels do encounter frequent draft problems and is guided by
periodical draft forecast issued by the authorities from time to time.
Therefore, all vessels cannot be berthed there," a shipping agency source
"At HOJ 2, products are mainly handled and here again the increased
arrivals and the resultant bunching of vessels at times will result in
For products such as fuel oil, the Haldia is an important loading port.
According to Platts data for January and February, IOC had sold up to
four 180 CST high sulfur fuel oil cargoes of 15,000 mt each for these months.
However, the refiner has started to reduce fuel oil exports in March from
Haldia and has sold only one cargo since. These cargoes have been awarded to
BP, Vitol, Mitsui and Itochu, the data showed.
According to some sources, fuel oil lifters from Haldia have waited for
10-15 days during this period, while some had even had their loading delayed
for a month.
"[The delays] varies from 3-4 days to 8-10 days. Another thing is their
jetties and the quantity you can load depends on the tide.
Haldia is a river port, so if the tide is low your ship can't get out," a
fuel oil trader said. "So again you have to wait, it is really absurd."
--Pradeep Rajan, firstname.lastname@example.org
--Jonathan Nonis, email@example.com
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