Sector: LPG

Paraguay on the double!

We have probably never wrote about Paraguay before, have we? Well, now is the time! The autogas sector is in its formatory stage there, but those early day development progress rates are usually the most spectacular ones. And it’s no different in this particular case.
A Petropar LPG station in Paraguay© is retailed at Petropar stations under the Ñande Gas brand name. Pumps bearing it are still few and far between, but that's about to change. And soon

As far as alternative fuels – both in terms of lower refueling costs and lower environmental impact – are concerned, South America was long associated with methanol rather than anything else. Once gaseous subsitutes to petrol came in to take over, CNG seemed like the natural (pun intended) choice. However, given how costly and difficult compressed methane refueling infrastructure is to develop, more and more countries tend to appreciate the advantages of LPG autogas. Paraguay is the next in line, with the number of retail outlets doubling over the past year.

As we said in the foreword, this doubling should be taken with some reserve, since we’re not talking about a market as mature as Turkey, Poland or Germany, where doubling the number of stations would mean going from several thousand to a dozen thousand. In Paraguay the growth, spectacular as it may seem at first glance, means going from… 10 to 19. But you know, Rome wasn’t built in a day. Let’s just add all the stations are operated by Petropar (Petróleos Paraguayos) and as far as we know, there are no other outlets offering autogas in the country.

If you think 19 stations are not exactly impressive – and we don’t blame you – remember that the original ten were launched less than a year ago, in October 2016, after several years of autogas’ absence from the market. So maybe it’s not that bad a result after all. And Petropar by no means aims to stop there – the short-term development plan is to double LPG imports from Bolivia (currently 100 thousand tonnes annually), which obviously must go hand in hand with a growing number of refueling stations. By late 2017 the network is expected to double again – thrifty motorists can expect 40 outlets by year’s end.

If Peruvians are consistent and keep developing the network by doubling it regularly, they may actually go from zero to hero in next to no time at all. And hopefully their neighbouring countries will soon adopt the good habit of replacing petrol and diesel with more affordable and remarkably cleaner autogas. We’ll keep you informed.


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Robert Markowski
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