Lebanon News

ZR Energy wins state tender to import gasoline

Caretaker Energy Minister Nada Boustani during a televised news conference to evaluate bids for a state tender to import gasoline, Dec. 9, 2019. (The Daily Star/Mohamad Azakir)

BEIRUT: ZR Energy company won a tender to import 150,000 tons of gasoline for the Lebanese state, after the offers were evaluated live on television Monday by the Energy Ministry.

ZR Energy offered to provide gasoline at market price, plus $38.90 per metric ton, with a $0.80 increase for discharge at an additional port.

Three companies submitted bids Monday for a state tender to import gasoline, following caretaker Energy Minister Nada Boustani's decision to extend the state's tender offer by one week to allow more competition.

ZR Energy, Lebneft FZE and Oman Trading International submitted bids to the Energy Ministry to import 150,000 tons of gasoline, paid for by the state. A fourth company was meant to submit a bid but had an incomplete file, said Sarkis Hlaiss, head of Lebanon Oil Installations.

Oman Trading International offered to provide gasoline at market rate, plus $46.80 and $1 for discharge at an additional port, while Lebneft FZE offered $39.36 with $0.75 for an additional port.

Boustani said the first shipment should arrive within 15 days “if the procedures were finished quickly.”

However, according to the tender documents published by the ministry earlier, once the tenders close, the ministry has one week to officially notify the winning bidder, which then has another week to confirm and sign the contract, before the shipment is sent.

The import plan aims to avoid fuel shortages and ensure that prices do not rise for Lebanese consumers, Boustani has said. The amount would fulfil 10 percent of the country’s needs.

Offers will be evaluated by Boustani in a live television broadcast at 10:30 a.m.

The tender offer was extended to Monday after only two companies, ZR Energy and Lebneft FZE, submitted bids last week. The tender offer was launched on Nov. 15, following a series of strikes by fuel sector business owners, in protest against dollar shortages and high exchange rates.

In Lebanon, most gas stations are paid in local currency but have to purchase fuel in dollars.

Boustani previously said that the fuel imported by the state will be sold to companies in Lebanese pounds.

 

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