Ethiopia resumes importing fuel from Sudan

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Ethiopia resumes importing benzene from Sudan as of August 12, 2013 after suspending such operation, for four months. According to a letter written to all the nine oil retailers operating in the country, the Ethiopian Petroleum Supply Enterprise (EPSE), the sole entity tasked with delivering the country’s total requirement of petroleum, announced that all dealers should mobilize their trucks to import fuel from Nile Petroleum Depot located in Al Shagara, near Khartoum.
The enterprise also announced that it aims to fulfill 75 percent of the country’s total consumption of benzene from the imported oil from Sudan.
According to the letter signed by Abayneh Awol Fuel Supply manager at the enterprise and distributed to the retailers, the benzene imported from Sudan will be distributed to regions including Addis Ababa, Western and North Western parts of the country.
Ethiopia used to import up to 85 percent of its annual benzene consumption worth over a billion dollars from Sudan, largely due to its geographic proximity. According to reports Ethiopia saves at least USD10 million a year in transport-related costs by using Sudanese oil sources rather than importing from markets further away, such as the Middle East.
Moreover as Ethiopia and Sudan link their power grids, the two countries are set to offset revenues earned from Ethiopia’s sale of hydropower processed electricity to Sudan with the equivalent expenditure on Sudanese fuel.
Ethiopia spends over 50 percent of its total export earnings to meet the Nation’s fuel demand.
EPSE was established by the Council of Ministers in July 2012 by amalgamating the Ethiopian Petroleum Enterprise (EPE) and the National Petroleum Depot Administration (NPDA). EPSE has 13 depots in various parts of the country and two branch offices in the neighbouring countries of Djibouti and Sudan.
Sudan last month announced that it produces 133,000 barrels of oil daily.