Dec 4, 2015- Petrolimex Nepal has delivered the first batch of aviation turbine fuel to Nepal Oil Corporation (NOC), nearly a month after receiving the supply contract. The fuel was brought to Kathmandu by air from Lucknow, India on Thursday, stored in the wing tanks of a Boeing 767 leased from Jordan Aviation Airline.
The corporation’s spokesperson Mukunda Ghimire said 39,800 litres of jet fuel were defueled from the aircraft and stored at the NOC depot at Sinamangal. According to Ghimire, Petrolimex has provided the fuel at the price of Rs180 per litre. “It will cost Rs230 per litre after VAT is added,” he said.
Ghimire added that the fuel brought by Petrolimex was cheaper by Rs3 per litre than that Nepal Airlines Corporation had been supplying to NOC.
The state-owned oil monopoly had signed a contract with Petrolimex Nepal on November 4 for the supply of aviation fuel in a bid to diversify its sources as shipments from its long-time supplier stopped following an unofficial embargo by India. NOC then opened a letter of credit for Rs500 million with Himalayan Bank.
Petrolimex will be airlifting 400 kilolitres of aviation fuel daily, Ghimire said. “As per the agreement, the company will deliver a total of 3,000 kilolitres of fuel to NOC. We can extend the supply contract if necessary.”
Initially, Petrolimex Nepal had planned to airlift fuel by using a Boeing 777 aircraft of Ethiopian Airlines. However, TIA said the jet was too large for its runway and refused to let it land there.
Presently, a Nepal Airlines Boeing 757 has been bringing fuel for domestic airlines. The national flag carrier had asked NOC to find another airline as it couldn’t spare aircraft to transport fuel, and that its regular flight schedule was being affected by the airlift.
NOC has not been able to supply adequate quantities of fuel to domestic airlines after its regular shipments were cut off. As a result, airlines have been forced to cut nearly 50 percent of their flights. The daily requirement of fuel of domestic airlines amounts to 50,000 litres.
Published on: The Kathmnadu Post (December 04, 2015)