Fuel prices, furnace oil demand drag petroleum sales to five-month low

PSO's market share dropped by 1 percentage point to 49.9 percent in the July-February period

By Our Correspondent
March 03, 2024
Representational image of filling of a car's fuel tank. — AFP/File

KARACHI: Petroleum sales fell 8 percent year-on-year to 1.12 million tonnes in February, the lowest in five months, as higher fuel prices and lower furnace oil demand hurt consumption, a brokerage report said on Saturday.


Brokerage Arif Habib Limited said motor spirit (MS) sales dipped 1 percent to 0.54 million tonnes, while high speed diesel (HSD) sales dropped 7 percent to 0.45 million tonnes in February.

Furnace oil (FO) sales plunged 58 percent to 0.05 million tonnes, as the country relied less on FO-based power generation amid ample supply of liquefied natural gas (LNG) and hydropower.

On a month-on-month basis, petroleum sales declined 19 percent in February, due to higher prices of MS and HSD, and fewer days in the month.

MS sales fell 12 percent month-on-month, while HSD sales contracted 13 percent. FO sales nosedived 73 percent.

In the first eight months of the fiscal year 2023/24, total petroleum sales decreased 13 percent year-on-year to 10.18 million tonnes, compared with 11.69 million tonnes in the same period last year.

All product categories showed a decline in sales; MS, HSD, and FO sales stood at 4.73 million tonnes, 4.12 million tonnes, and 0.80 million tonnes, respectively.

On a company-wise basis, Pakistan State Oil (PSO) saw its sales decline 5 percent year-on-year in February, due to lower sales of MS, HSD, and FO by 5 percent, 9 percent, and 19 percent, respectively.

Attock Petroleum Limited (APL) and Shell Pakistan Limited (SHEL) witnessed a fall of 1 percent and 15 percent year-on-year, respectively, in their sales, the report said. Meanwhile, Hascol Petroleum Limited (HASCOL) remained stable in February.

In the July-February period, APL, PSO, and SHEL saw their sales decrease by 4 percent, 15 percent, and 18 percent year-on-year, respectively, the report said.

HASCOL, on the other hand, recorded a growth of 19 percent year-on-year.

PSO's market share dropped by 1 percentage point to 49.9 percent in the July-February period, compared with 50.9 percent in the same period last year. SHEL's market share also fell by 0.5 percentage point to 7.2 percent year-on-year.

APL and HASCOL increased their market share to 10.3 percent and 2.5 percent, respectively, from 9.3 percent and 1.8 percent in the same period last year. The market share of other oil marketing companies remained stable at 30.2 percent in the July-February period.