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Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Fuel Oil News

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UAE Bans Ship Over Fuel Breach

The world's number two container line MSC is in talks with the United Arab Emirates after the Gulf country banned one of their vessels from entering its waters over what authorities said was a breach of tough new sulphur emissions rules for ships.This is one of the first punitive actions taken by a jurisdiction since regulations came into effect in January which make it mandatory for ships to use fuel with a sulphur content of 0.5%, down from 3.5% previously, or install devices that strip out the toxic pollutant - known as scrubbers.Ships were no longer able to even carry high sulphur fuel fro

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Most Bunker Sales in Singapore are Low-sulphur Fuels -BIMCO

Low-sulphur fuels accounted for 84% of total February sales in Singapore, slightly up from 83% in January. The sale of low-sulphur fuel oil (LSFO) made up the largest component at 71.5%, with marine gas oil (MGO) accounting for 12.5%, BIMCO reports.Total bunker sales in February fell 16% to 3.9 million metric tons compared with January, reflecting lower demand for shipping as the coronavirus paralyzed intra-Asian supply chains.Now that both the sulphur cap and the non-compliant fuel oil carriage ban have come into force…

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China's Bunker Fuel Demand Plummets

China's marine fuels sales fell by as much as 50% in February as the rapidly spreading coronavirus and prolonged Lunar New Year break strangled freight movement in and out of the global manufacturing powerhouse, trade sources said.The epidemic, which has killed almost 3,000 people and infected about 80,000 in China alone, triggered the sharpest contraction on record for Chinese factory activity in February and caused massive port congestion because of labor shortages.The resulting plunge in freight demand has knocked 40% off Asian prices for very low-sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) since early Januar

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Maersk to Raise HSFO Bunker Fuel Consumption to 25%

Danish shipping group A.P. Moller-Maersk plans to raise the proportion of high sulphur fuel oil it consumes from 10% to 25% by the year-end, CEO Soren Skou says.The world's largest container shipping firm consumed a total of around 11.80 million tonnes of shipping fuel last year.Maersk's current shipping fuel use comprises of around 10% ultra low sulphur (0.1%) fuel oil, 10% high sulphur fuel oil and the remaining 80% is low sulphur fuel oil. (Reporting Stine Jacobsen and Shadia Nasralla. Writing by Ahmad Ghaddar; editing by David Evans)

Image: Port of Rotterdam

Green Bunker Demand Jumps at Rotterdam

Low-sulfur fuel sales rose sharply in Rotterdam in the last quarter leading up to the implementation of International Maritime Organisation (IMO) 0.5pc sulfur cap on 1 January.According to Port of Rotterdam, the demand for LNG, bio and low-sulfur bunkers has increased enormously in Rotterdam over the past year. Total sales in this largest European bunker port fell from 9.5 million m3 to 9 million m3.In the last quarter of 2019, sales of low-sulfur bunker oil with a maximum sulfur content of 0.5% – the so-called VLSFO, very low sulfur fuel oil – increased enormously.

Wärtsilä will supply customized Hybrid Scrubber systems that meet and exceed the latest emissions legislation to two Norwegian Cruise Line ships. Photo: Norwegian Cruise Line.

Wärtsilä to Supply Scrubbers to NCL

European technology giant Wärtsilä will be supplying hybrid scrubber system packages for Norwegian Cruise Line's (NCL) Norwegian Breakaway and Norwegian Getaway.According to a press note from Wärtsilä, the scrubber systems have been ‘specially customized to meet the specific needs’ of the two cruise ships – which included adapting ‘to meet the ships’ restricted space availability’.The scrubber systems will enable the 325 meters long cruise vessels to be in compliance with the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) sulfur restriction legislation while operating on heavy fuel oil (HFO).

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Capesize Index Turns Negative for the First Time Ever

Capesize index plummets to -133, the first time ever in negative territory – is it all up from here?The Baltic Exchange Capesize Index (BCI) dropped to -133 index points on February 4, 2020, turning negative for the first time ever on January 31, 2020. The composite BDI index (BDI), which has excluded the more stable handysize segment since March 2018, also dropped on February 4, 2020 to settle at 453 index points.The BCI has been on a freefall through the entirety of December, but the descent started to pick up more steam during the past couple of weeks.

"The trouble will come when the products are mixed and some blends prove incompatible with one another: when a more aromatic 0.5% product comes into contact with a more paraffinic blend, the products are likely to separate and form sludge, blocking filters.” Jack Jordan, a researcher with S&P Global Platts. 
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IMO2020: Low Sulfur Fuel Potential Pitfalls

(This is excerpted from Maritime Reporter & Engineering News' January 2020 "The Path to Zero" column.)Are the world’s ships’ engines ready for IMO compliant very low sulfur fuel? That’s a wide open question as ship owners step to the end of the preparatory gang-plank on January 1, 2020 when 0.5% very low sulfur distillate fuels (VLSF) have to replace residual heavy fuel oil (HFO) containing 3.5% sulfur.You might think that given the length of time to prepare – since 2008 – shipping experts and engineers would have a clearer picture about new fuels and marine engines and operability.

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2019 Shipping Grows for Port of Green Bay

Port of Green Bay reports continued growth in 2019.The 2019 shipping totals were the highest since 2007 during a period that saw the highest tonnage in the past 30 years; 2006 saw 2.55 million tons shipped through the port. The common denominator during both periods of time is a robust economy. The recently-concluded shipping season saw 2,254,674 tons of cargo move through the Port, an 8% increase over the previous season.“It is interesting how the port has changed since the 2006 and 2007 shipping seasons that saw 2.32 million tons and 2.55 million tons moved…

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Low-sulphur Fuel Oil Prices Drop

Prices for very low sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) in ports around the world have fallen within the first month since the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) new regulation for a 0.50% global sulphur cap for marine fuels has taken effect.Singapore has seen one of the largest drops in the price of VLSFO, which peaked on January 7, 2020 at $740 per metric ton (MT) and dropped $99 to $641 per MT on January 22, BIMCO points out.Prices rose in December as shipowners transitioned…

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Low-sulphur Fuel Sales Surge

The final quarter of 2019 marked a massive decline of high-sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) sales, as the industry transitioned into compliance of the International Maritime Organization's (IMO) 2020 Sulphur Cap (IMO 2020). In Singapore, the world’s largest bunkering hub, the bunker sale landscape saw significant change as the sale of high-sulphur fuel oil dropped tremendously in a matter of months. In contrast, the sale of low-sulphur fuels skyrocketed in the final quarter.The first wave…

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China Tax Waiver for Cleaner Ship Fuel Exports

China has approved a long-awaited tax waiver on exports of cleaner ship fuel, paving the way for refiners to boost output, though Beijing may initially limit shipments to focus on growing its coastal marine fuel market, state refiner officials say.Ships globally have switched to lower sulphur fuels, or use emissions-removing devices, to comply with new rules imposed by the International Maritime Organization this year.China's State Council, or cabinet, gave the go-ahead to waive taxes on the 0.5% or very low sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO)…

Feel the Power of Methanol: These 49,000 dwt vessels are built with the second generation of MAN B&W ME-LGIM two stroke dual-fuel engines that can run on both methanol and conventional marine fuels. 
Photo: Methanex Corporation

IMO2020: Methanol Proves Promising

When the clock strikes midnight on December 31, 2019, the maritime world enters a bold new era of emission reduction. With its growing fleet of methanol fueled ship and more than 60,000 hours of operating experience under its belt, Waterfront Shipping Company has a five-year headstart.As a general rule, shipowners are remiss to share insights on their operations, lest their competitors catch wind and leverage the same technology and savings. The case of Waterfront Shipping Company Ltd.

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China Stocks up on VLSFO Ahead of IMO2020 Deadline

Chinese marine fuel suppliers have signed up short-term deals to buy very low-sulphur fuel oil from companies like oil major Shell, Germany's Uniper and U.S. commodities trader Freepoint ahead of a new standard on emissions for the global shipping industry that kicks in on Jan. 1.While China's state refiners have pledged to produce a combined 14 million tonnes of the fuel for 2020 that complies with the tighter rules set by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), Beijing…

Image: Port of Rotterdam

STS Loading Caustic Soda in Rotterdam

The new International Maritime Organisation (IMO) regulations aim to significantly reduce emissions of sulfur oxides, which are responsible for atmospheric acidification. This means that vessels may only use fuels with sulfur levels of up to 0.5 percent as of 1 January 2020.The current permitted level is 3.5 percent. However, another option is available. Shipping companies may continue to use heavy fuel oil if they install ‘scrubbers’ on their vessels to purify the exhaust gases with a wash treatment of water and soda."As the world’s largest bunker port…

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CMA CGM and Total to Develop LNG Ship Refueling in Marseille

Container shipping firm CMA CGM will use the French Mediterranean port of Marseille for refueling some of its planned gas-powered vessels, backed by a supply partnership with energy group Total.Total will supply liquefied natural gas (LNG) and a refueling barge to enable CMA CGM to refuel LNG-powered vessels at the Marseille-Fos hub starting in 2021, the companies said in a joint statement on Wednesday.The initiative covers five vessels with a capacity of 15,000 twenty-foot equivalent…

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Asian Refiners Strive to Finish IMO Preparations

At SK Energy's largest refinery in South Korea, engineers are rushing to complete a new processing unit ahead of schedule as the firm looks to boost sales of low-emission fuels before new marine fuel standards take effect in just one month.In Japan, the country's second-biggest refiner Idemitsu Kosan Co is taking a more cautious stance, increasing capacity for low sulphur fuel oil (LSFO), but also relying on blending to produce IMO 2020 compliant bunker fuel.The different approaches…

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Fuel Market Calm ahead of IMO Changeover

Fears about a shortage of diesel and other middle distillates stemming from new marine pollution regulations have receded, with distillate premiums falling to some of the lowest levels for two years.From the start of 2020, ocean-going ships will be required to use low-sulphur fuels or employ exhaust gas cleaning systems, known has scrubbers, under pollution control rules approved by the International Maritime Organization (IMO).Fuel traders and shipowners have warned for several…

Photo: Sovcomflot

IMO SG Meets Sovcomflot

Sovcomflot, the Russian maritime shipping company specializing in petroleum and LNG shipping, said that its team has met Kitack Lim, Secretary-General of the International Maritime Organization (IMO).He was met by Sergey Frank, Chairman of the Board of Directors of Sovcomflot and Igor Tonkovidov, President and CEO of Sovcomflot, as well as Alexey Klyavin, President of the Russian Chamber of Shipping.One of the key issues on the IMO's agenda is mitigating the impact of global shipping on the environment.The Agency has adopted new…

Photo: Clean Shipping Alliance 2020

CSA Protests Malaysia's Scrubber Ban

Members of the Clean Shipping Alliance 2020 expressed disappointment in regard to Malaysia’s recently-announced decision to prohibit the use of open-loop scrubbers in its coastal waters. The Malaysia Shipping Notice states that ships calling to Malaysian Ports are advised to change over to compliant fuel oil or change over to closed-loop/hybrid systems before entering Malaysian waters and ports.“We are disappointed in this announcement,” said CSA 2020 Chairman Capt. Mike Kaczmarek.

Image: IMO

SQLearn, PAS Launch Sulfur Cap Course

SQLearn and Prevention at Sea (PAS) have launched the new innovative e-learning course “IMO 2020 Sulfur Cap”The Greek e-learning solutions provider said: "This is the one-time stop to learn everything that IMO requires to achieve compliance with the IMO 2020 Sulfur Cap Legislation."The e-learning course covers all the aspects of the IMO 2020 Sulfur Cap Regulations and gives you the deepest knowledge on the upcoming maritime changes defined by IMO and strictly implemented on January 1st…

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Malaysia Bans Open-loop Ship Scrubbers

Malaysia has prohibited the use of open-loop scrubbers by ships plying Malaysian waters, as Southeast Asia's third-largest economy joins the growing number of nations adopting new industry guidelines on reducing sea pollution.New regulations from the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) will require shippers to adopt more environmentally-friendly measures to manage their fleets, including reducing the sulphur content in fuels used in their vessels from Jan. 1 2020.In a notice issued to the shipping industry…

Ralf Nagel. Photo: German Shipowners’ Association

Germany Mulls Onshore Power in Seaports

German federal government took a step to make onshore power in seaports more attractive; this week the environment ministers of the federal and state governments will be meeting in Hamburg to discuss onshore power initiatives in Germany.Against this backdrop, the German Shipowners’ Association (Verband Deutscher Reeder, VDR) welcomes plans to provide ships with onshore power while on berth in German ports.“We are united in our goal to further improve the climate and the air quality in the ports…

Pic: Sinopec

Sinopec Builds 100 Barge VLSFO Fleet

Chinese energy giant China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (Sinopec) is planning to build a fleet of 100 barges over the next three years as part of its mission to become a major regional supplier of the IMO 2020-compliant very low sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO).According to a report from Reuters, this would be one of the top Asian refiner’s biggest shipping investments, Sinopec hopes the fleet would serve its stated ambition to become a top regional supplier of VLSFO.The fleet would include new orders of 50 vessels of 8…

Pic: Indian Oil Corporation Ltd

Asian LPG Market to Cross $109Bln by 2024

The Asian liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) market stood at over $81.4 billion in 2018 and is projected to grow at a CAGR of over 5% to cross $109 billion by 2024, as increasing demand for LPG  as a fuel for power generation in remote and off-grid locations in comparison to its less environment-friendly alternatives like coal, diesel and fuel oil.Increasing demand for LPG used to run vehicles (Autogas)  is being witnessed as it is a comparatively cheaper automotive fuel and can be used in vast applications related to transportation…

Photo: BIMCO

IMO2020: Market Uncertainty Brings More Fuel Oil Price Volatility

The oil market has recently been shaken up by geopolitical events, but volatility in the price difference between low and high sulphur fuel cannot be explained by that alone – the uncertainty is the chaos factor.The uncertainty of the upcoming IMO 2020 Sulphur cap regulation (IMO2020) is having a big impact on the bunker market. Whereas, the price for Marine Gas Oil Low Sulphur (MGO LS) has largely remained stable, the price for High Sulphur Fuel oil (HSFO) has been become increasingly more volatile in recent months.