BFS Trading Mulls Extra Barge in Nigeria on Rising Demand From Red Sea Diversions

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Wednesday January 31, 2024

Nigerian physical supplier BFS Trading FZCO is considering adding an extra delivery vessel to its operations in the country as diversions away from the Red Sea drive an increase in sales.

The firm supplies VLSFO and LSMGO off Lagos, Bonny, Sanbarth and Escravos, and has seen an increase in bunker enquiries in recent months, it said in an emailed statement on Tuesday.

The increase may prompt the company to take on a third delivery vessel of about 3,500 DWT in size.

"We have seen more interest from ship owners and operators examining the full range of supply options in West Africa," Francisco Lakanu, general manager and founder of BFS Trading, said in the statement.

"Our delivered volumes are rising, as is our average stem size.

"We have benefitted from increased port activity in all trades in Nigeria but supply disruption in South Africa at a time when tensions in the Red Sea are forcing ships to take the long route around the Cape is also a contributing factor.

"Currently we deploy the MT Praisel (1,160 DWT) and the MT Omoniyi (930 DWT) but we are in talks to add a third vessel of around 3,500 DWT to our fleet in order to support the business and facilitate larger stem sizes."

Bunker demand is increasing across African ports as shipping companies avoid the Red Sea and Suez Canal in the wake of recent Houthi attacks, favouring longer routes around the Cape of Good Hope instead.

BFS Trading will be attending the IBIA annual dinner during IE Week in London next month. To contact the company to arrange a meeting, email or visit its website.