Hong Kong's bunker industry is looking forward to a busier second half of the year. File Image / Pixabay
Imports of fuel oil to Hong Kong almost doubled in May from the previous month ahead of its authorities easing restrictions on bunkering there.
Fuel oil imports totalled 604.7 million litres in May, up by 96.1% from April's level but down by 28.6% from the same month a year earlier, according to the latest data from Hong Kong's Census and Statistics Department. Fuel oil imports for the first five months of 2021 reached 2.5 billion litres, down by 20.9% from the same period a year earlier.
Hong Kong's bunker sales are expected to jump significantly in the second half of the year after the authorities eased COVID-19 restrictions on the shipping industry in June. Bunker-only calls had been effectively halted from July 2020 to June 2021 by a rule requiring two weeks of quarantine before these operations could be carried out, but this rule was lifted from June 15.
Hong Kong's total sales dropped by 28% from the second quarter of 2020 to the third quarter, according to Ship & Bunker and BLUE Insight's quarterly volumes survey.