SINGAPORE - Kuwait Petroleum Corp (KPC) has sold very low sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) via a term tender for loading between January and June 2024, market sources said this week.

The term tender was awarded at a discount of $7 to $8 per metric ton to Singapore 0.5% VLSFO cargo quotes, on a free-on-board (FOB) Kuwait basis, likely to an oil major, said the sources.

The refiner offered 80,000 to 120,000 metric tons of VLSFO to be lifted per month in the first half of 2024 via a tender that closed earlier this week.

It had sold VLSFO via a six-month term tender for loading in the second half of 2023, while its last spot tender offering VLSFO was for September loading and was awarded at a discount of $8 to $9 to Singapore quotes, FOB Kuwait, said the sources.

Recently, the refiner had taken to offering more high sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) on a spot basis instead of VLSFO.

It also sold HSFO via a three-month term tender for loading between November 2023 and January 2024, past tender records showed.

Fuel oil tenders from Kuwait are closely watched by market participants, as the Al Zour refinery is set to be a major global fuel oil producer once it ramps up to full capacity, with its export volumes affecting market sentiment in Asia.

Kuwaiti VLSFO exports to Asia have been crimped in recent months and this partly led to some support in the Singapore market, with cash premiums and market backwardation rallying to a more than one year high in November.

(Reporting by Jeslyn Lerh; Editing by Sonia Cheema)