Egypt's state oil firm EGPC has issued a tender to import up to 4.5 million barrels of crude oil in the fourth quarter, a document showed on Monday, as the oil importer seeks to stave off fuel shortages.
EGPC is seeking one to three cargoes of medium crude to the ports of Ras Shukheir or Sukhna from mid-October to December, the document showed.
A month ago, EGPC issued a tender for the same ports and quantity for the September-December period. Traders said the release of the latest tender was probably an indication that the firm has struggled to find suppliers.
Two trade sources active in the Mediterranean market said they had not heard that the previous tender, which closed on 7 September, had been awarded.
Egypt's cash-strapped government owes foreign energy producers at least $3 billion, industry sources told Reuters, as cancelled import tenders and lengthening queues at petrol stations point to fresh strains on fuel supplies.
Offers for the new tender are due by 24 September and will remain valid until 5 October, the document showed. Egypt is a significant gas producer, with much of the output consumed locally, and a net importer of oil.