April 2, 2018 / 3:40 PM / a year ago

UPDATE 1-Bangladesh tenders for up to 1.52 mln T oil products

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DHAKA, April 2 (Reuters) - Bangladesh Petroleum Corp (BPC) issued an international tender on Monday to import up to 1.52 million tonnes of refined oil products in the second half of 2018, officials said.

The state-owned company is seeking 1.1 million tonnes to 1.28 million tonnes of 500ppm sulphur gasoil, 100,000 tonnes of jet fuel and 120,000 to 140,000 tonnes of 180-cst high sulphur fuel oil.

The tender closes on April 11 and is valid for 75 days to June 24, 2018.

Delivery will be carried out in phases over the second half of 2018, a senior BPC official said.

Some volumes will also be imported through separate term deals, he told Reuters, without giving details.

BPC resumed issuing tenders for long-term contracts in February 2016 after a 15-year hiatus, during which it negotiated directly with suppliers of fuel products.

It wants to move away from direct deals as part of efforts to buy at cheaper rates through international tenders.

A shortfall in supplies of natural gas has forced the South Asian country to burn oil, a costlier option, to generate electricity.

Bangladesh typically imports around 3.2 million tonnes of diesel and 2.5 million tonnes of fuel oil annually, making it one of the top 10 such importers in the region.

Currently, BPC has term contracts with 10 companies for refined oil product imports.

Suppliers for Bangladesh’s middle distillates contracts include Kuwait Petroleum Corp, Malaysia’s Petronas, Emirates National Oil Company, Thailand’s PTT, Indonesia’s Bumi Siak Pusako, PetroChina and Unipec.

Bangladesh has also signed a 15-year deal with India’s Numaligarh refinery to supply diesel, its first long-term contract with any Indian supplier.

BPC also buys 700,000 tonnes of Murban crude from Abu Dhabi National Oil Co annually and another 600,000 tonnes of Arab Light from Saudi Aramco for its only refinery.

Bangladesh, with more than 160 million people, also plans to tap currently cheap and plentiful global liquefied natural gas (LNG) supplies to fill a domestic supply shortfall.

Reporting by Ruma Paul; Editing by Adrian Croft

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