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ExxonMobil offers bunkering transparency and innovation

ExxonMobil has announced that it is the first to supply via an independently accredited mass flow metering system (MFMS) in the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp (ARA) region. ExxonMobil Premium HDME 50™ marine fuel is now available through an MFMS that has received third-party accreditation from Lloyd’s Register.

Depending on stem size, bunkering with an MFMS can help reduce delivery time by up to three hours, compared with conventional tank dipping. As with the previous introductions, the ARA MFMS is calibrated in line with both OIML R 117 and ISO 17025 standards, ensuring accuracy to within +/- 0.5 per cent.

South Korea retains top ranking in shipbuilding industry

South Korea maintained its number one ranking in the global shipbuilding market in July. The South Korean yards were responsible for almost half of all new orders placed in July 2018.

According to Clarkson Research, Korea received orders in July totaling 970,000 compensated gross tonnage or CGT, a measure of work needed to build a vessel. That accounts for about fifty percent of the month’s global shipbuilding orders.

South Korea ranked first with new orders worth 4.96 million CGTs, or 115 vessels, in the first six months of this year, marking the first time in three years to be at the head of the pack in the first half. Chinese shipbuilders came second with 4.39 million CGTs, or 203 ships.


The dilemma of fitting scrubbers

The uncertainty about what will happen to bunker prices after 2020 is creating something of a dilemma for tanker owners. We explore whether they should opt for scrubbers or not.

As shipowners are normally able to pass on the additional cost of bunkers to charterers the actual price of fuel is often not their main concern. The expectation is that the price of High Sulphur Fuel Oil (HSFO) will decline after the implementation of IMO regulations, as most existing demand will shift to Low Sulphur Fuel Oil (LSFO).

At the same time, the tight availability of LSFO will ensure high premiums for LSFO and MGO. The dilemma for tanker owners is therefore about the price differential between LSFO and HSFO, as it will decide the attractiveness of fitting a scrubber to comply with forthcoming IMO regulations which limits the amount of sulphur in bunkers.

For VLCCs, the cost of fitting an open loop scrubber in a newbuild ship is around $2.5-$3.0 million (say $2.7 million), whereas the cost of retrofitting a scrubber on an existing VLCC will be $4-$4.5 million (say $4.3 million).

Fuel rule change cuts demand for canadian oil

As if pipeline bottlenecks weren’t enough, Canadian heavy oil producers are facing a new barrier to marketing their crude.

New rules limiting the amount of sulfur allowed in shipping fuel is expected to cut demand for both high-sulfur fuel oil and the sour crude that yields it. In Canada, that could extend — or worsen — the biggest price slump in nearly five years.

While the pipeline bottleneck is expected to ease up next year, a new International Maritime Organization rule that goes into effect in 2020 will keep heavy crude at a discount of $31-$33 a barrel against WTI, according to a July report by the Canadian Energy Research Institute, or CERI.


Singapore bunker fuel sales fall

Bunker fuel sales in Singapore in July fell 8.1percent year on year to 4.04 million mt, preliminary data released by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore showed.

July sales were, however, up month on month by 2.9percent from 3.92 million mt in June.

Meanwhile, vessel arrivals in Singapore for bunkering fell 2.6percent year on year to 3,297 in July, but were up 5.3percent from June, the data showed.

July bunker sales comprised 2.92 million mt of 380 CST high sulfur fuel oil, 26,600 mt of 180 CST HSFO, 841,000 mt of 500 CST HSFO, 100,200 mt of low sulfur marine gasoil, 5,000 mt of 380 CST low sulfur fuel oil, 27,200 mt of 180 CST LSFO, and 50,300 mt of marine gasoil.

There were no sales of marine diesel and 500 CST LSFO in July, the data showed.

Sales of bunker fuel classified as others totaled 67,600 mt in July, up 36.3percent from June.

The HSFO grades have a maximum sulfur content of 3.5percent and LSFO has maximum 1percent sulfur, in line with MPA regulations.

Long beach sees drop in container trade

The Port of Long Beach posted a 4.4 percent year-on-year drop in container throughput in July to 688,457 TEU after several months of steady gains.

Laden imports fell 8.2 per cent to 347,736 TEU for the month, while ladem exports slid five per cent to 119,747 TEU. Empties were up 2.6 per cent to 220,975 TEU.

Port officials blamed the decline on a shift in vessel deployment and port calls by the major east-west container carrier alliances.

Blast on oil tanker MT Desh Vaibhav, two casualties

The Shipping Corporation of India (SCI) on Wednesday said there were two ‘casualties’ following an explosion and fire on its oil tanker MT Desh Vaibhav in the Gulf of Oman.

The fire was extinguished and the ship “is in full command”, the SCI said. The incident took place on Tuesday off the Oman coast. The vessel was en route to Fujairah on the eastern coast of the United Arab Emirates, and the blast took place in one of its cargo tanks, the national shipper said.

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