Taiwan's Formosa expects gasoline exports to halve in 2020

 Taiwan’s Formosa Petrochemical Corp expects to cut its gasoline exports by about half in 2020 as the coronavirus crisis dents demand, a spokesman said.

Formosa’s monthly average volume is estimated to drop to about 100,000 tonnes a month from some 200,000 tonnes per month in 2019, KY Lin said, adding:

“Domestic demand has picked up in June but overseas demand is not great and we do not want to be caught in a situation where we have to struggle with excess cargoes to export.”

“We will keep our refinery throughput at about 80% of our capacity in July,” Lin said, unchanged from June.

The refiner, operator of a 540,000 barrel per day refinery in Mailiao which is one of the 10 largest standalone refining plants in Asia, is in talks to sell around 30,000 tonnes of gasoline a month through an August-December contract.

It has recently sold a total of four cargoes for June to July loading from Mailiao.

Formosa’s most recent year-long contract expired in March, but negative gasoline margins to crude had prompted it to delay the term talks, Lin said.

Although Asia’s gasoline margins have returned to positive territory since June 3, a resurgence of new coronavirus infections in several countries could stall demand recovery. GL92-SIN-CRK (Reporting by Seng Li Peng; Editing by Jason Neely and Alexander Smith)

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