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Thursday, October 17, 2019

Oil Tanker News

AdobeStock / © Jose Gill

U.S. Sanctions Bite; Traders Shun 300 Tankers

Nearly 300 oil tankers globally have been placed off limits as companies fear violating U.S. sanctions against Iran and Venezuela, driving freight rates to new highs, industry sources said.The move has taken roughly 3% of the global oil tanker fleet out of the market, according to industry sources and data on Refinitiv Eikon, sending rates soaring to secure tankers to ship oil, particularly to Asia."Freight rates are going through the roof and people are getting very nervous with the cost of shipping…

AdobeStock / © Kasto

CNOOC Seeks Replacements for Sanctioned COSCO LNG Tankers

China National Offshore Oil and Gas Company (CNOOC) is on the hunt for liquefied natural gas (LNG) tankers to charter, several industry sources told Reuters, looking to replace ships it had previously hired that are linked to a Chinese company sanctioned by the United States for allegedly transporting Iranian oil.The company, COSCO Shipping Tanker (Dalian), is one of four Chinese firms on which the Trump administration imposed sanctions on Sept. 25, in what it described as the biggest sanctions taken by the U.S.

© PhotoGranary/AdobeStock

Iranian Tanker Hit by Missiles, Oil Rises

Oil prices jumped more than 2% on Friday, October 11, 2019, after Iranian media said a state-owned oil tanker had been struck by missiles in the Red Sea near Saudi Arabia, raising the prospect of supply disruptions weeks after attacks on Saudi oil plants.The Suezmax crude tanker Sabiti was ablaze and suffered heavy damage after being hit by two missiles, Iranian media reported.Both oil benchmarks recorded their biggest daily rise since Sept. 16, the first trading day after the…

Oil Tankers Fire Injures 10 in S.Korea

A fire that spread across two oil tankers in a South Korean port injured 10 people on Saturday, coastguard and fire officials said, adding the blaze had largely been put out.An explosion occurred on the Stolt Groenland, a 25,000-tonne, Cayman Island-flagged oil tanker, at the southern port of Ulsan at around 10:50 a.m. (0150 GMT), a coastguard official said.There were 25 sailors aboard, including Russians and Filipinos.The fire spread to another oil tanker docked nearby, the 9…

Image: Trafigura

Frontline Says No to Tankers Options from Trafigura

The world's largest oil tanker shipping company Frontline Ltd has declined options to buy four more tankers from Trafigura Marine Logistics (TML) and said that it will keep to buying only 10 tankers.Last month, the Bermuda based company announced an agreement with TML  to acquire ten Suezmax tankers, with two separate options to acquire two plus two additional Suezmax tankers.The options were part of a deal reached between the two companies last month to acquire ten Suezmax tankers…

Dubai Harmony. Pic: Dubai Navigation Corp

Sture Terminal Situation Normalised

The fire in the engine room of the crude oil tanker Dubai Harmony moored at Equinor’s Sture terminal in Øygarden municipality on the west coast of Norway near Bergen has now been extinguished.At 1102 this morning, Equinor's alarm center received reports of a fire in the engine room on board Dubai Harmony, which was loading at the quay at the Sture terminal.The fire has now been extinguished and the fire service is continuing to cool the area where the fire took place.The 102 people who were at the Sture terminal were evacuated from the terminal when the incident occurred as a precaution…

Fire Reported on Tanker at Sture Terminal

A fire onboard an oil tanker at Norway's Sture crude export terminal has been put out, the fire service told Reuters on Friday.The fire broke out in the engine room of the Dubai Harmony tanker during loading at the Equinor oil terminal on Norway's west coast, according to rescue services and police.No one was injured, and the terminal's output was not affected by the incident, although there was a partial evacuation of staff."The head of the response team on the site confirms that the fire was put out at 1257 CET (1057 GMT)…

Pic: Euronav

Euronav to Store Low-Sulfur Oil

The crude oil tanker company Euronav has purchased a total of 420,000 metric tons of compliant fuel oil and marine gasoil so far, the company revealed as it detailed its IMO 2020 sulfur cap plans. In aggregate the purchase value of very low sulfur fuel oil (VLSFO) has been at $447 per metric ton compared to a bunker price (HFO-3.5% Sulfur content) of $400 per metric ton over the same procurement period.According to the Belgium shipping company, the oil is currently aboard a ultra large crude carrier (ULCC) Oceania, a vessel built in 2003, and will soon be on its way to Singapore.

Fredriksen Seeks Investors for Empire

Industrialist John Fredriksen is seeking investors to take larger stakes in his companies and could relinquish control of operations as part of a plan to reduce his workload, the Norwegian-born 75-year-old told two newspapers on Friday.It was the clearest sign to date of a succession plan for Fredriksen, whose net worth has been estimated at more than $12 billion.His self-made business empire includes oil-tanker firm Frontline, dry bulk shipper Golden Ocean and rig owner Seadrill, as well as fish farmer Mowi and other companies."There are several ways this could be done," he told business dail

Trouble on the high seas: tensions grow over Gulf shipping security

(Photo: ©Carabay / Adobe Stock)

UK highlights Gulf shipping threats

The UK Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab is to call for more international support to protect shipping in the Strait of Hormuz when he meets his French and German counterparts later today (Friday, August 31) for talks about Iran. Last month, Iran seized a British-flagged oil tanker in the Strait in apparent retaliation for the UK’s seizure in Gibraltar of an Iranian ship accused of violating European sanctions by taking oil to Syria.The UK joined a U.S.-led mission to escort merchant vessels through the Strait of Hormuz at the start of this month but Germany and France declined to take part…

Chart: BIMCO

BIMCO: US Crude Exports Soar in June 2019

The highest US crude oil exports to China in 11 months lifted total seaborne US crude oil exports to a record high at 11.9 million (m) tonnes in June 2019. Also contributing to the June record was South Korea, as exports to the other main Far Eastern buyer reached an all-time high volume of 2.3m tonnes.1.2m tonnes were shipped to China between June 1, and  June 30, , up from 1m tonnes in May and worlds apart from no exports at all in the months of August through October in 2018…

Pic: DHT Holdings

DHT Holdings Bags 3-Year Time Charter

Bermuda-based crude oil tanker company announced that  it has entered into a three year time charter with a leading refining company for one of its 2012 built very large crude carriers (VLCC).The charter will commence after the vessel completes a scrubber retrofit in the fourth quarter of this year, said the New York-traded company.The time charter has a base rate of $30,000 per day with all earnings up to $37,500 to DHT following a profit sharing structure that includes scrubber…

File Image: AdobeStock / © Riccardo Arata

Trafigura in Fuel JV with Frontline, Golden Ocean

Trafigura Group is joining forces with shipping firms Frontline and Golden Ocean to set up a company to supply shipping fuels ahead of a shake up in regulations next year which could disrupt fuel delivery and cause prices to spike.The three companies said on Tuesday that subject to agreement on final terms, the joint venture is expected to start operating in the third quarter.From Jan. 1, International Maritime Organization (IMO) rules will bar many ships from using marine fuel, also called bunker fuel, containing more than 0.5% sulphur in order to help reduce air pollution.

File Image: The Grace 1 (CREDIT: MarineTraffic.com)

Gibraltar: Iran Tanker Release Report Incorrect

A highly placed Gibraltarian government source denied on Tuesday an Iranian news agency report which said the Iranian oil tanker Grace 1 would be leaving the British overseas territory on Tuesday.British Royal Marines seized the tanker on July 4 off the coast of the British Mediterranean territory of Gibraltar on suspicion of violating EU sanctions by taking oil to Syria, which Tehran denies.Iran's semi-official Fars news agency quoted unidentified Gibraltar authorities as saying…

Indian prime minister Narendra Modi. Photo PIB

Stena Seeks India's Help to Release Ship

Stena Bulk  chief executive and president Erik Hanell wrote to Indian prime minister Narendra Modi to personally enter the efforts to secure the release of UK-flagged tanker ship Stena Impero and its primarily Indian crew members, who have been detained in Iran since mid-July.According to media reports, the owner of British-flagged oil tanker Stena Impero, which was seized by Iran on July 19 with 23 crew, including 18 Indians on board, has appealed to  Modi personally intervene to negotiate with Tehran.The oil tanker Stena Impero was seized by Iran while passing through the Hormuz Strait.

HMS Kent (Image: Royal Navy website)

UK Warship Sails for Gulf Mission

British warship HMS Kent set sail for the Gulf on Monday to join a U.S.-led mission protecting commercial shipping vessels in the region amid heightened political tension between the West and Iran.Britain has joined the United States in a maritime security mission in the Gulf to protect merchant vessels.That comes after Iran seized a British oil tanker in the Strait of Hormuz. On July 4 British marines seized an Iranian vessel, which is suspected of smuggling oil to Syria, off the coast of Gibraltar.“Our focus in the Gulf remains firmly one of de-escalating the current tensions…

File Image: AdobeStock / © JJAVA

P&O Cancels Dubai, Gulf Voyages amid Iran Tensions

P&O Cruises has cancelled cruises around Dubai and the Arabian Gulf after Iran seized a British-flagged tanker in the region.Citing increased tensions, the company said it has cancelled its planned programme in the region from October until at least March next year and all guests be issued a full refund.Last month, Iran's Revolutionary Guards seized a British tanker, Stena Impero, near the Strait of Hormuz for alleged marine violations.

Grace 1 remains impounded, not because of its flag but because it was suspected of taking oil to Syria in breach of EU sanctions, an allegation that Iran denies. Image Credit: © MarineTraffic.com

INSIGHTS: Noose Tightens Around Iranian Shipping

Somewhere on its journey from the waters off Iran, around Africa's southern tip and into the Mediterranean, the Grace 1 oil tanker lost the flag under which it sailed and ceased to be registered to Panama. Iran later claimed it as its own.The ship carrying 2 million barrels of Iranian crude was seized by British Royal Marines off Gibraltar, raising tensions in the Gulf where Iran detained a UK-flagged ship in retaliation.Grace 1 remains impounded, not because of its flag but because it was suspected of taking oil to Syria in breach of EU sanctions…

File Image: AdobeStock / © Seafarer81

War Risk Costs Impact UAE Bunkers, Singapore benefits

Shippers trying to minimise time in the Middle East after oil tanker attacks pushed up insurance costs are scaling back purchases of marine fuels from the United Arab Emirates' (UAE) Fujairah oil hub, trade sources said.Instead, they are turning primarily to Singapore, the world's top refuelling hub, to buy marine fuels, also known as bunkers, with some diverting to smaller bunkering ports, including in India and Sri Lanka, the sources said.A tonne of 380-centistoke (cst) high…

The Tanker riah (File Image: CREDIT MarineTraffic.com / © Marinko)

U.S. Unsure About Details of Tanker Towed to Iran

U.S. officials say they are unsure whether an oil tanker towed into Iranian waters was seized by Iran or rescued after facing mechanical faults as Tehran asserts, creating a mystery at sea at a time of high tension in the Gulf.The MT Riah disappeared from ship tracking maps when its transponder was switched off in the Strait of Hormuz on July 14. Its last position was off the coast of the Iranian island of Qeshm in the strait.Iran says it towed a vessel into its waters from the strait after the ship issued a distress call.

UK PM to Discuss Grace 1 Tanker with Gibraltar

British Prime Minister Theresa May will meet with Gibraltar's Chief Minister Fabian Picardo later on Wednesday to discuss the detained Iranian oil tanker Grace 1, a spokesman for May said.The tanker was seized earlier this month by British Royal Marines off the coast of the British Mediterranean territory of Gibraltar on suspicion of violating sanctions against Syria.May and Picardo will also discuss Brexit, the spokesman said.Reporting by Elizabeth Piper

Revolutionary Guards Seize Oil Tanker in Gulf

Iran has seized a foreign tanker smuggling fuel in the Gulf, state television quoted Iran's Revolutionary Guards as saying on Thursday."A foreign vessel smuggling one million litres of fuel in the Larak Island of the Persian Gulf has been seized," the station said, adding that the ship was seized on Sunday.The Revolutionary Guards said the impounded vessel - which Iranian authorities have not yet named - was the same one it towed after it sent a distress call."The vessel that Iran towed to its waters after receiving a distress call, was later seized with the order from the court as we found ou

File Image of the Stena Impero (CREDIT: MarineTraffic.com / © Erwin Willemse

Iran: British-flagged Tanker Seized in Gulf

Iran's Revolutionary Guards said on Friday they had captured a British-flagged oil tanker in the Gulf after Britain seized an Iranian vessel earlier this month, further raising tensions along a vital international oil shipping route.Britain said it was urgently seeking information about the Stena Impero after the tanker, which had been heading to a port in Saudi Arabia, suddenly changed course after passing through the Strait of Hormuz at the mouth of the Gulf.The Revolutionary…

Second Tanker in Gulf Turns Sharply Towards Iran

A second oil tanker, the British-operated, Liberian-flagged Mesdar, turned sharply north towards Iran's coast on Friday afternoon after passing westward through the Strait of Hormuz into the Gulf, according to Refinitiv tracking data.The turn took place at about 1600 GMT, the data showed, about 40 minutes after a similar course shift by the Stena Impero tanker that Iran's Revolutionary Guards said they had captured.There was no immediate word from the Guards about the second tanker or from the operator of the second tanker on what had prompted the change in direction along the vital internatio

File Image: AdobeStock / © Taras

U.S.: Ships Should Keep AIS On

The United States wants all ships to keep their tracking transponders on to cut down on illicit activity and smuggling, and to increase transparency with movements of ships around the world, a senior State Department official told Reuters.Automatic identification systems trackers are the most accessible way of observing where ships are located.The practice of turning off AIS by some vessels from countries such as Iran has become common to evade closer scrutiny as the United States pushes to cut off Iranian oil exports.The official…

File Image of the seized tanker Stena Impero (CREDIT: MarineTraffic.com / © Irwin Willemse

Owner: Detention of UK-flag Tanker Unacceptable

The continued detention of British-flagged tanker Stena Impero is "unacceptable and unjustifiable" and there are concerns for the welfare of the crew after 19 days in confinement, the vessel's owner said on Tuesday.Iran's Revolutionary Guards on July 19 seized the Stena Impero in the Strait of Hormuz waterway for alleged marine violations. That came two weeks after Britain seized an Iranian oil tanker near Gibraltar, accusing it of violating sanctions on Syria.Britain has repeatedly…