June 16, 2017 / 10:25 AM / in a month

CEFC China awarded bunker fuel license by Zhoushan free trade zone

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BEIJING, June 16 (Reuters) - Privately-run CEFC China Energy has won a license to supply marine bunker fuel off the east coast of China to vessels on international voyages, CEFC officials said on Friday.

CEFC was granted a license by the Zhoushan Free Trade Zone to supply bunker fuel from bonded storage to vessels that call at the Zhoushan area, according to two CEFC officials.

The Zhoushan Free Trade Zone is in the coastal province of Zhejiang and is a new free trade zone the Chinese government approved earlier this year to boost commodities trade.

Chinese media yicai.com reported last week that three other companies including Zhejiang Energy Group, Jiangsu CNPC & Tafo Petroleum Corp and a unit of privately run Herun Group were also given licenses.

Those permits bring the total number of tax-bonded bunker licenses in the country to nine.

Transactions from bonded tanks are exempted from taxes.

"CEFC has rented tanks in Zhoushan and also barges to start the new business," said one senior CEFC source.

A CEFC spokesperson confirmed the new license.

The new permit allows CEFC to expand its China oil business which has until now largely focused on operating its 17.6 million-barrel storage facility in the southern island province of Hainan.

Before the new permits from Zhoushan, only five companies have the licenses for bonded bunker, four of which are state oil firms and one independent, Brightoil Petroleum.

Reporting by Chen Aizhu in BEIJING and Roslan Khasawneh and Mark Tay in SINGAPORE; Editing by Christian Schmollinger

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