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Global El Niño could affect LPG supply, what measures is Minem evaluating?

Faced with a lower supply of LPG in the capital in recent days, the Ministry of Energy and Mines (Minem) reported that the supply of this fuel is being regularized and will tend to normalize in the coming days. As reported by Ricardo Villavicencio, director of Hydrocarbons Processing, Transportation and Marketing of the aforementioned ministry, to date there is already an autonomy of about six days in Callao.

“At the terminal level, there is already product both at sea and on land and it is already being dispatched regularly. In addition, there are scheduled import vessels. The next one will arrive on August 18 and Pluspetrol has a ship scheduled for the end of August. With which, there would be no problems in the medium term”he asserted in dialogue with El Comercio.

He explained that the incident mainly responds to the extension of maintenance until August 21 of the natural gas plants, where the resource is produced. And although the plants are prepared with more fuel, this time the demand exceeded expectations.

“Talara meets the demand for LPG from the north and it had been estimated that it would start producing LPG at the end of July. However, due to testing for the new refinery, this has been pushed back to the end of August. With this, the demand that was going to be supplied with such refinery production has been transferred to Callao and Pisco. So the sale has been higher than normal”he asserted.

global El Niño

Another fact that affected the normal supply of LPG in the country is a delay in importing vessels -which represent 20% of the national demand- due to problems in the Panama Canal: the draft of the vessels has been limited due to the lower volumes of water as a result of global El Niño.

Villavicencio explained that Minem has already been studying what measures to face in such a situation during the second half of the year and 2024. “We are monitoring because the global El Niño phenomenon that is estimated for the summer of 2024 will affect the Panama Canal, with which it is likely that there will be delays in the imports that are made. We are evaluating what measures we can implement, such as having floating storage to avoid these situations of delays and stock breaks”said.

In parallel, he explained that modifications have been made so that Pluspetrol can take advantage of the extensive storage it has in Pisco. The objective is that there is a greater dispatch of tankers with the fuel. This, so that they can turn the Pisco plant into a second important supply point in the country. “If today it serves up to 100 cisterns, the idea is that it can serve up to 250 cisterns. The idea is that, in the event of any problem in Callao due to abnormal waves, Pisco is like a hub from where LPG can be supplied to the entire country”he asserted.

Source: Elcomercio

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