Caltex Sri Lanka unit eyes Maldivian lubricant market

April 20, 2007 (LBO) – Chevron Texaco’s Sri Lanka unit, Caltex Lubricants, Friday signed a five-year deal with a Maldivian firm to expand in to the lubricant market in the archipelago. The agreement will let Caltex enhance its market position in the Maldivian lubricant market which is growing at 12 percent a year.

“Currently we have approximately ten percent of the lubricants market in the Maldives and we estimate an annual growth of around five percent. We plan to further strengthen our position in this market,” Kishu Gomes, Managing Director Caltex in Sri Lanka told reporters.

Gomes says the firm aims to increase its market share to 30 percent within the next two to three years.

Although the size of the Maldivian market is only three million litres per year, it has good profitability due to its high growth rate.

The Maldives, an Indian Ocean archipelago consisting of 1,192 coral islands, uses different types of boats to travel among islands.

It is considered South Asia’s most exotic holiday destination and employs a large number of Sri Lankans who work in areas ranging from leisure, finance, trade and education.

Caltex Lubricants has a 70 percent share of Sri Lanka’s 45,000 kilolitres per year or six billion rupee lubricant market.

The firm also has its own blending plant in Sri Lanka. Gomes says the firms hopes to focus on toll blending for local lubricant companies and tap in to the oil exploration business.