Urea import from Saudi Arabia Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC) against $100 million credit facility will be made through Gwadar port and the first shipment will reach Pakistan in the last week of January this year. Sources told Business Recorder on Friday that a commercial agreement had already been signed between Trading Corporation of Pakistan (TCP) and SABIC for the import of over 200,000 tons of urea against $100 million credit facility being provided by the Saudi Fund for Development (SFD).
After signing the commercial agreement, SABIC also provided a tentative schedule for the supply of the commodity. As per the schedule, the full quantity of urea will be supplied during the calendar year 2013. According to SABIC, out of the total supply, some 115,000 tons of urea will be supplied during first quarter (January-March) of 2013.
Sources said that SABIC authorities had also confirmed first urea shipment would reach Pakistan by the end of this month. “A vessel namely M/s Poavosa Wisdon-VI has been nominated by SABIC. This will load urea from Al-Jubail port of Saudi Arabia on January 27-30, 2013 and accordingly will reach Pakistan on January 31 or February 1, 2013.
The consignment will be offloaded at Gwadar port, as the federal government has already asked TCP that the import under SABIC agreement should be made through Gwadar port, they added. Sources said that M/s Poavosa Wisdon-VI will carry some 25,000-30,000 tons of urea as first shipment under credit facility. While the second consignment of some 40,000 tons of urea is likely to arrive in February and the third consignment of 45,000 tons of urea in mid March 2013.
After arrival of urea shipments, the distribution, transportation and bagging of commodity would be handled by M/s. National Fertiliser Marketing Limited (NFML) to ensure timely availability of the commodity in the domestic market, they informed. “Current import will be sufficient for the ongoing crop season and there will be no need to importer further during CY13, if regular gas supply restore to the fertiliser sector,” they added.
They said that despite the fact that Pakistan”s fertiliser industry have urea production capacity of over 6.5 million ton annually as against domestic demand of 6 million tons, the local market is witnessing urea shortage from last two years as fertiliser plants are unable to produce urea due to gas curtailment. Therefore, with an aim to avoid urea shortage, Economic Co-ordination Committee (ECC) of the cabinet has decided to import urea through open tenders and as well as from SABIC under credit facility. It may be mentioned here that from the last three years SABIC is providing urea under SFD credit facility and during the last calendar year 2012 some 223,597 tons of urea was supplied by SABIC under SFD credit facility.