Australia’s fuel reserves ‘holding up’ in coronavirus pandemic

Australia’s fuel stocks are holding up despite COVID-19 pressures on global and local supply chains with measures being put in place to ensure reserves are maintained during and beyond the coronavirus crisis.

Ahead of a G20 Energy Ministers meeting on Friday night, Angus Taylor said “Australian motorists should be assured that there is no current risk to our fuel supplies due to COVID-19”.

“Australia’s fuel supply has proven to be highly reliable, even during significant global and local disruptions,” Mr Taylor said.

“This (G20) meeting will be an important opportunity to assess impacts on global energy markets and reassure both markets and energy consumers.”

The world’s top economies will focus the meeting on ensuring energy security throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and during the recovery phase.

G20 energy ministers will discuss “immediate corrective measures and a co-ordinated response to ensure energy market stability and security”.

The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission last Friday announced it had authorised the nation’s major petroleum refiners to put in place measures to ensure fuel supplies remained open during the pandemic and when the economic shutdown ceases.

Mr Taylor and his department are speaking daily with the fuel retail sector and oil companies to “ensure the resilience of supply chains” and put in place adequate workforce management systems.

The government has also instructed the Energy Department to hold weekly National Oil Supplies Emergency Committee meetings, providing rolling updates to industry representatives, federal, state and territory governments.

Australia currently sources fuel from more than 70 countries, with no single nation providing more than 20 per cent of petroleum imports.

The nation’s stocks of vehicle and jet fuel have remained stable over the past decade, supporting approximately three weeks of consumption.

Mr Taylor said at any one time, there are up to 45 oil tankers on the way to Australia collectively carrying around two weeks of additional supply.


Extracted from The Australian

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