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Matrix Bharat to supply fuel to Kochi.

Singapore-based joint-venture firm Matrix Bharat Marine Fuels (MXB) will start supplying bunker fuel to two ports in Kochi on the Indian west coast from July 22, to capitalise on growing demand in the country, its managing director said.

The company, a 50/50 joint-venture between Matrix Marine Fuels, a subsidiary of German oil trading firm Mabanaft, and India's Bharat Petroleum Corporation Limited (BPCL), expects to sell at least 3,000-4,000 tonnes of marine fuels a month by end-2010 at Cochin Oil Terminal and Wellington Island in Kochi, adding to its volumes in Singapore and Mumbai.

MXB aims to to grow its monthly bunker volume in India to at least 14,000-15,000 tonnes by end-year, including its Mumbai volumes, and become the second-biggest player in the market, after Singapore-listed Chemoil Energy, by first-quarter 2011. MXB estimates total demand for marine fuels in India to reach 1.4 million tonnes this year, up around 30 per cent versus 2009, the bulk of which is sold from the tax-free Jamnagar-Mundra area by Chemoil Adani.

"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 MXB, 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 for MXB.

MXB acts as the international bunkering agent of BPCL in Singapore and India, and sources its fuel oil exclusively from the Indian refiner.

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Publication:Oil & Gas News
Date:Jul 12, 2010
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