‘Low-sulfur fuel production in Al-Zour awaited’

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KUWAIT CITY, Aug 16: According to a report by the Standard & Poor’s Global agency, the markets for low-sulfur fuels are awaiting the start of production at the Al-Zour Refinery, which may compete with the production of the entire Mediterranean countries in the event of tight supplies, reports Al-Qabas daily.

A trader told the agency that the production of Al-Zour Refinery would fundamentally change the low-sulfur fuel markets in Europe and the Middle East where expectations indicate that the Al-Zour Refinery would produce one million metric tons of fuel oil per month. He said, “It is expected that the refinery’s exports will start at the end of August or the beginning of September”.

The trader indicated that the refinery’s work was expected to enter into force this month, and be fully operational in the first quarter of 2023. Meanwhile, Rebecca Foley, an oil analyst at Standard & Poor’s Global, explained that there are several factors, including low diesel quantities in Europe and other markets, that kept prices high.

This contributed to widening the price differentials for various fuels, including low-sulfur fuels. With the implementation of European Union’s sanctions on refined oil products from Russia from February, Europe will have to compensate for the lost Russian quantities. It may seek the largest imports from many oil sources in the Middle East countries. In addition, Humayun Valakshahi, a senior commodity analyst at Kepler, which is a shipping tracking company, explained that the Russian- Ukrainian war has exacerbated the shortage of oil and fuel in several markets, the most important of which is Europe. This may open the way for oil countries in the Middle East to try to bridge the gap, and Kuwait may be the most important of those countries

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