Demand at the UAE's main bunkering location is unlikely to return to its former levels until the Qatari diplomatic crisis is resolved. File Image / Pixabay
Bunker demand at the Middle Eastern hub of Fujairah dropped to just 400,000 mt in June, according to trading firm Glander International Bunkering.
Demand at the UAE port sank to 400,000 mt that month from about 700,000 mt a year earlier, Sean Burgin, senior bunker sourcer at Glander, said at the Petrospot Global Bunkering Summit Thursday.
Bunker sales reached a recent peak of about 800,000 mt in January but has mostly declined since then, according to Burgin. But Fujairah saw a strong rally to just above 500,000 mt in July -- above the approximately 450,000 mt seen in the same month a year earlier, when the market was weakened following tanker attacks in the region.
In the past Fujairah has briefly overtaken Rotterdam's position as the world's second-largest bunkering port on occasion. But the Qatari diplomatic crisis in 2017 shifted a significant amount of demand away from the UAE, and Fujairah is unlikely to return to its previous volume levels until this is resolved.