Tuesday, August 7, 2007

Asian Aframax Tanker Rates

Asian Aframax Tanker Rates May Extend Drop on Lack of Cargoes
By Katherine Espina
Aug. 7 (Bloomberg)

The rate for shipping oil on Asian routes on tankers that can carry 80,000 metric tons fell a third day and may extend its decline because of a lack of cargoes.

The rate for aframax tankers on the Kuwait-to-Singapore route dropped 2.3 percent to Worldscale 130.77 yesterday, the lowest in more than two weeks, according to data from the London-based Baltic Exchange. That puts the cost of shipping a ton of oil on the route at $13.96, Bloomberg data showed.

``The market's very quiet as I don't see many fixtures,'' Katsunori Nishikawa, general manager of the chartering team at the shipbroking division of Matsui & Co. in Tokyo, said by phone today. There aren't ``any long-haul voyages like from Indonesia to Korea or Japan, just short trades.''

Six aframax tankers, which can carry 596,373 tons of fuel, are expected to arrive in Singapore in the next two weeks, compared with four that were capable of carrying 431,749 tons of cargo last week, according to Bloomberg data.

Bookings for August haven't been enough to drive charter rates higher for aframax tankers on east of Suez routes, according to shipbrokers including London-based Galbraith's Ltd. The rate on the Kuwait-to-Singapore route for an aframax tanker averaged Worldscale 136.58 in July, 6.9 percent below this year's average.

``Dwindling aframax interest caused rates to ease to Worldscale 130,'' for voyages to the East, London-based E.A. Gibson Shipbrokers Ltd. said in its weekly report.

The cost of moving 80,000 tons of oil to Japan from Indonesia was at Worldscale
132.5 yesterday, unchanged from Aug. 1, according to Bloomberg data. That puts
the cost of shipping a ton of oil on the route at $11.55.

``The Indonesia/East market was a little less active but the trend there remains
steady at Worldscale 130,'' Galbraith's said in its weekly report.

Aframax vessels, which can carry 600,000 barrels of crude oil, are predominantly deployed on short-haul routes or intra- regional trade.

The cost of transporting gasoline, diesel and other oil products on medium- to long-range tankers fell yesterday. The rate of shipping 30,000 tons of oil products to Japan from Singapore declined 0.7 percent to Worldscale 230.42, according to the Baltic Exchange. The cost of moving 55,000 tons of products to Japan dropped 0.5 percent to Worldscale 195.58.

Shipping 75,000 tons of oil products fell 0.6 percent to Worldscale 147.29 yesterday, the first decline in more than two weeks, based on data on the Baltic

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