BP Marine is to close its bunkering operation in Cyprus as a result of sales failing to deliver on expectations.
BP Marine first moved into the Cyprus marine fuels market in February 2005 in anticipation of increased shipping activity following the country’s entry to the EU the previous year.
This, however, did not materialise and the bunkering market has in fact shrunk as economies and trade continued to be adversely affected by ongoing regional conflicts.
Parris Beverly, managing director of BP Marine Fuels, says: “Over the course of the last three years we have made every effort to stimulate business in Cyprus, but ultimately there has been no significant change. Therefore, in line with BP Marine’s strategy of only operating in ports with potential for significant growth, we have taken the decision to withdraw.
“BP Marine is currently working with its Cyprus customers to discuss the decision and to identify alternative bunkering solutions. BP Marine’s resources in Cyprus will be reallocated to other ports.”
BP Marine’s business in Cyprus was primarily focussed on military fuels, with lower levels of commercial domestic activity. All remaining product deliveries will be made in January.
The Sea Dweller double-hulled barge, which has carried out BP deliveries in Cyprus, is being redeployed to the North Sea to support BP Marine’s operation in the region.
Despite withdrawing from both Cyprus and Portland in the last four months, BP Marine has succeeded throughout 2007 in significantly developing its overall operation by entering the burgeoning bunkering market in Panama, expanding its Salalah facility to meet increased demand and increasing its storage capacity in Singapore.