International energy trading giant Vitol’s new €405mn, VTTV storage facility in Vasilikos on Cyprus’ south coast is due to start receiving first product shipments in mid-November. Phase one of the project features 28 tanks with a total storage capacity of 543,000 cu ms (3.4mn barrels) for diesel, gasoline and jet fuel, a deep water marine jetty as well as road tanker loading facilities at a cost of €305mn. Phase two, scheduled to begin in mid-2015 will create an additional 13 tanks and an extra capacity of 305,000 cu ms at a cost of €105mn.

It will also include a four-berth 1.2 km long jetty capable of loading or discharging 1,250 cubic meters per hour, and capable of serving vessels of up to 200,000 tons (Suezmax). Vitol says the aim of the VTTV terminal is to serve as a hub in the Eastern Mediterranean to receive middle distillates, such as kerosene and diesel from the Middle East to Europe via the Suez Canal. Traffic through the canal has risen in 2014, reaching a record of 13.7mn tons in August (see table, p9). The terminal will also facilitate the movement of gasoline from Europe to the East Mediterranean and the Red Sea and fuel oil from the Black Sea to Asia, Vitol says. It aims to provide a safer oil products ship-to-ship operation for international traders, with 250 trans-shipments currently taking place per year in the open sea around Cyprus. (CONTINUED - 333 WORDS)