After a period of relatively subdued bunker sales in Panama, volumes in June hit a 15-month high of 430,583 mt, according to the latest data from the Panama Maritime Authority (AMP).
It is the highest total since sales of 463,682 mt in March last year.
The performance marks a turnaround for the country's 2019 marine fuel sales in more ways than one; it is not only the highest sales total of the year but the first month to record a year-over-year improvement on 2018. The June total was almost 19% higher than the 362,142 mt sold in June 2018.
There was no evidence of the imminent IMO2020 rule in the sales figures, with June 2019's sales showing the usual 90%/10% product split of 389,527 mt of fuel oil sold and 41,056 mt of distillates.
June's rise looks to be entirely due to a significant increase in the number of vessels calling at the country's key ports of Cristobal and Balboa; the average stem size for the month of 744 mt was slightly lower than the year-to-date average of 758 mt, but with the 579 vessels calling for bunkers was the highest in a month since March last year.
Year to date sales for the first half of 2019 are now 2,282,871 mt, 9% behind the 2,508,217 mt sold at this point last year.