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Matrix Bharat to supply at Kochi in July

Supplier set to begin deliveries of 380-cst at Kochi later this month.



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Updated on 08 Jul 2010 08:04 GMT

Singapore-based Matrix Bharat Marine Services Pte. Ltd. is set to begin supplying bunker fuel at Kochi, India, from July 22, the company's general manager Avik Ghosh said Wednesday.

Matrix Bharat - a joint venture between Matrix Marine Fuels and India's state-run oil company Bharat Petroleum Corp. Ltd. - will begin offering 380-centistoke (cst) fuel oil from Cochin Oil Terminal and Wellington Island in Kochi. The product will be sourced from Bharat Petroleum's 172,000 barrels-per-day (bpd) Kochi Refinery and delivered to customers by barge.

Matrix Bharat began supplying 380-cst marine fuel at Mumbai in December 2009, sourcing product from Bharat Petroleum's 135,000 bpd Mumbai refinery. The company is now estimated to sell around 3,000-4,000 tonnes per month at the west coast port.

The company also offers marine fuel in Singapore ex-pipe at Oiltanking and at Singapore anchorage, acting as the international bunkering agent of Bharat Petroleum in the city state and sourcing its fuel oil exclusively from the Indian refiner.

On the east coast of India, Matrix Bharat also supplies at Chennai, but not on a regular basis. The company sources its product from Chennai Petroleum Corporation Ltd's refinery. The company, formerly known as Madras Refineries Limited (MRL), is a unit of Indian Oil Corporation.

Matrix Bharat aims to increase its monthly bunker sales in India to at least 14,000-15,000 tonnes by the end of this year, which would make the company the second-largest supplier in the country after Chemoil-Adani Pvt. Ltd. - a joint venture between Singapore-listed Chemoil Energy and India's Adani Enterprises, which began supplying in Mundra at the start of 2009.

"Our main objective is to grow the market in India. As a part of this strategy, we have expanded into Kochi after starting our operations in Mumbai at the beginning of this year to add to our market presence," Stefan Herde, managing director of Matrix Bharat, told Reuters.

"Kochi is along the shipping lane, so we expect a lot of demand from containers, bulk break cargo and tankers. We also chose Kochi because BPCL has a refinery located nearby," said Avik Ghosh, general manager of Matrix Bharat.

According to recent estimates, total demand for marine fuels in India is expected to reach 1.4-1.5 million tonnes this year, up around 30 percent against 2009.

Mundra port has a sizeable share of the country's bunker market. The Gulf of Kutch, which includes Mundra, accounts for over 22 percent of maritime cargo traffic in India - a figure which is expected to exceed 30 percent by 2011-2012.

Meanwhile, cargo traffic in Mumbai during the year ended May 2010 rose by 14 percent to 9.568 million tonnes and by 27.5 percent to 2.805 million tonnes in Kochi. Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust recorded a 4.3 percent rise in cargo traffic to 10.52 million tonnes.






Related Links:

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Matrix Bharat begins bunker operations in Mumbai
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Matrix Bharat Pte. Ltd.
Matrix Marine Fuels LLC.
Bharat Petroleum Corp. Ltd.
Kochi
Mundra
Mumbai
India

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