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 A total of 5,232,142 metric tonnes (mt) of marine fuel was sold in Panama last year – 4.3% up on the 5,016,513 mt recorded in 2021.

Last year’s total was also 10.2% up on the 4,746,628 mt of marine fuel sold in 2020, according to data published by the Panama Maritime Authority.

Sales of very low sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) saw a 1.8% dip on the year, from 3,531,475 mt in 2021 to 3,468,300 mt.

However, a 26.5% year-on-year (y-o-y) increase in sales of high sulphur fuel oil (HSFO), which is only permitted to be used by ships with scrubbers – from 922,416 mt in 2021 to 1,167,137 mt in 2022 – contributed to a rise in overall bunker sales at the Central American marine fuel hub.

Elsewhere, sales of low sulphur marine gasoil rose on the year, from 413,151 mt in 2021 to 483,159 mt in 2022, representing a 16.9% y-o-y increase. Marine gasoil sales (113,546 mt) dipped 24% y-o-y.

The rise in sales volume was reflected by an increase in the number of vessels bunkered. In 2022, 7,546 ships were refuelled – 7.4% up on the 7,029 vessels recorded in 2021.

The average number of bunker vessels in operation per month was 32.2 compared with 33.8 in 2021.

The majority of bunker sales involved vessels on the Pacific side of the waterway where a total of 4,414,639 mt of marine fuel was delivered. This accounted for 84.4% of bunkers sold in Panama in 2022.

As previously reported, last week, data published by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) showed a 4.2% y-o-y decrease in marine fuel sales at the world's largest bunker hub.


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