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Turkmenistan’s refineries started bitumen export sales in early 2018 and sold 25,200 tons of bitumen from March to June.
Turkmenistan began bitumen production in 2015, but did not export the product until early 2018. Today, two refineries can produce bitumen in Turkmenistan: Seidy Refinery has the capacity to produce 37,000 tons of bitumen per year, Turkmenbashy Refinery can produce more than 200,000 tons per year and plans to increase production with the launch of new delayed coking and deasphaltizing units.
Bitumen Sales 2018 (mt)
“Bitumen is in high demand in Central Asia due to massive road construction plans, especially in Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kirgizstan,” comments Denis Varaksin, director of DYM Resources.
Bitumen is sold on an FCA refinery basis with loading into rail tank cars. Traders report that it is difficult to find suitable rail tank cars for bitumen transportation due to lack of equipment with “steam-heating coats” that help to heat the product during unloading.
Bitumen was sold in cargoes of 2000 to 7200 tons with a loading period between two to ten months. Export prices were stable from March to June 2018.
90% of bitumen is used in road construction, with the remnant going into construction industries as a waterproof material. The global bitumen market comprises around 107 million tons.
DYM Resources is a trading company focused on developing high-quality services in the base oil, wax, and petcoke and bitumen markets. The company works in Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, and Germany.