SINGAPORE: India’s state-run refiner, Bharat Petroleum Corp. (BPCL) , has bought Malaysian crude for the first time in almost ten months in its latest spot tender, a company source said on 22 February.
BPCL bought 600,000 barrels of Malaysian Labuan crude for April loading from Petronas in a tender awarded last week, the source said.It is the first time since last May that Bharat has bought crude from Malaysia through tender, while rivals Indian Oil Corp. and Hindustan Petroleum bought Malasyian crude for January and February loading late last year.
Traders expressed surprise at Bharat’s purchase given the surging Tapis APPI assessments — the benchmark for Labuan crude — this month but the source said the cargo was bought on a delivered basis and was the best choice for the refinery last week.
“It made sense for us to buy Malaysian crude. We have a term contract, this is an additional cargo,” the source said.BPCL has a term contract to lift 15,000 barrels per day of Malaysian crude for the 2007-2008 year.
In its previous tender, BPCL bought 1.5 million barrels of Yemeni Masila crude for March and April loading.BPCL operates a 240,000 bpd refinery in Mumbai beside its 150,000 bpd refinery in the southern Indian state of Kerala, run by its subsidiary Kochi Refineries Ltd. .It also owns a majority stake in a 60,000 bpd refinery in north east India, run by Numaligarh Refinery Ltd.