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Hin Leong's judicial manager offers sale of Singapore bunkering, lubricant supplier

SINGAPORE (Reuters) - PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC), the court-appointed judicial managers of Singapore oil firm Hin Leong Trading (Pte) Ltd, has placed a notice in local media for the sale of an “independent bunker fuel and lubricant supplier in Singapore”.

“The Company has an operating track record spanning over 40 years, providing bunkering services and quality bunker fuels to vessels in Singapore,” the notice said, adding that it also has an “in-house brand of lubricants.”

The notice, published on Oct. 1, also said that the majority shareholder of the company was seeking to sell its shares in the firm pending relevant regulatory approval, and that expressions of interest are to be sent to PwC’s Goh Thien Phong, Chan Kheng Tek and Lie Kok Keong by Oct. 15.

Goh and Chan became the court-appointed judicial managers of HLT after it was revealed in April that the oil trader engaged in wide-scale and long-lasting fraud.

PwC did not respond to an emailed request for comment and could not be reached by phone.

HLT’s subsidiaries include bunker supplier Hin Leong Marine International Pte Ltd (HLMI), incorporated in 1975, and Ocean Bunkering Services Pte Ltd (OBS), founded in 1978.

The oil trader also operates a 50,000 tonne-per-year lubricant blending plant in Singapore, offering an in-house “HL Universal” brand, according to the company’s website.

“It’s quite obvious (it’s) Hin Leong - no other firm here does bunker and lubes physically here,” said a Singapore-based bunker trader, referring to the notice.

OBS and HLMI did not respond to emailed requests for comment, and phone calls went unanswered.

In 2019, OBS ranked as the third-largest shipping fuel supplier in Singapore and HLMI came in at 17th, according to the city-state’s Maritime and Port Authority.

Singapore is by far the world’s largest bunkering hub, with about 50 million tonnes of marine fuels sold annually worth billions.

Reporting by Roslan Khasawneh, Anshuman Daga and Jessica Jaganathan; Editing by William Mallard