Russian oil floods into UAE's Fujairah Port via ship-to-ship transfers

OIL storage demand and transit volumes are poised to grow further at the United Arab Emirates' Fujairah port this year as Russian trade flows continue to flood the hub, Reuters reports.


Russian oil barrels have been flowing in to popular ship-to-ship transfer hubs in the Middle East and Asia since last year as Western sanctions led to the reshuffling of trade flows.


"We have seen a huge influx of Russian barrels coming into Fujairah ¡­ particularly Urals (crude oil) and naphtha," Maha Abdelmajeed, commercial manager at VTTI Fujairah Terminals, told delegates at the Fujairah Bunkering and Fuel Oil Forum (FUJCON).


The hub is expected to register strong and healthy demand for storage going forward, said Mr Abdelmajeed.


Total storage capacity at Fujairah stands at 11.1 million cubic metres so far, based on port statistics. Existing tanks are already at full capacity, said trade sources on the sidelines of the forum.


Fujairah had a record year in terms of oil cargoes in 2022, with close to 12,500 vessels calling at its offshore anchorage area, statistics show.


Amid the reshuffling of trade flows, volumes at the port were up about 10 per cent last year, said Martijn Heijboer, business development manager at the port of Fujairah.


"There is still some uncertainty this year as the price cap (on Russian oil) just started in February," said Mr Heijboer, adding that there is room for transit volumes and storage demand to grow because of new projects.