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ENGINE: Europe & Africa Bunker Fuel Availability Outlook (6 Dec 2023)

Bunker fuel availability normal in the ARA; prompt bunker supply tight in Malta and Piraeus; LSMGO tight in Durban and Richards Bay.

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RESIZED ENGINE Europe and Africa

The following article regarding Europe and Africa bunker fuel availability has been provided by online marine fuel procurement platform ENGINE for post on Singapore bunkering publication Manifold Times:

  • Bunker fuel availability normal in the ARA
  • Prompt bunker supply tight in Malta and Piraeus
  • LSMGO tight in Durban and Richards Bay

Northwest Europe

VLSFO availability is said to be normal in the ARA bunkering hub. Lead times of 5-7 days are generally recommended for VLSFO deliveries there to ensure full coverage from suppliers, a source says. However, some suppliers can offer deliveries with shorter lead times.

HSFO and LSMGO availability is also normal in the ARA, the source adds. Recommended lead times for HSFO are 5-7 days, while LSMGO requires a shorter lead time of 3-5 days. 

The ARA’s independently held fuel oil stocks averaged 15% higher in November than across October, according to Insights Global data.

The ARA's fuel oil stocks in November increased to their highest monthly level since August. The region imported 210,000 b/d of fuel oil in November, down from 243,000 b/d imported in October, according to cargo tracker Vortexa.

The UK became the biggest fuel oil import source for the ARA hub, accounting for 20% of the region's total fuel oil imports in November, followed by Turkey (17%) and Lithuania (8%). Other import sources were Sweden and Poland, both accounting for 6%. 

Meanwhile, the ARA hub’s independent gasoil inventories — which include gasoil and heating oil — fell by 4% in November despite a rise in gasoil imports.

HSFO supply remains tight for delivery off Skaw. Lead times of 7-10 days are recommended for delivery there, a trader says. Meanwhile, availability of VLSFO and LSMGO grades is relatively better, requiring shorter lead times of 5-7 days.

Bunker fuel availability is said to be good in the German port of Hamburg. A trader recommends lead times of 3-5 days for optimal coverage from suppliers there.  

Mediterranean

Availability of all bunker fuel grades is said to be normal in Gibraltar.  LSMGO and VLSFO grades are available for prompt delivery dates, with recommended lead times of 3-5 days for both grades, a source says. For HSFO, shorter lead times of 2-4 days are recommended.  

Adverse weather conditions have prevailed in Gibraltar intermittently over the last week. Strong wind gusts of 20 knots are forecast to hit the port on Wednesday evening. Rough weather conditions are forecast on Friday as well, which could hamper smooth bunker deliveries there.

Bunkering remains limited off Malta due to adverse weather conditions. Bunker operations remained limited to less weather-prone bunkering area four out of the total six bunkering areas on Wednesday, according to the port agent MH Bland. Moreover, availability of all bunker fuel grades is said to be tight there and weather disruptions can cause more delays, a trader says.

Meanwhile, bunker fuel availability is normal across all grades in Istanbul, a source says.

Bunker fuel supply is also normal in the Greek port of Piraeus. But securing prompt deliveries can be slightly difficult there, a trader says.

Bunkering is progressing normally in the Portuguese ports of Lisbon and Sines, where supply of VLSFO and LSMGO grades is normal.

Africa

In South Africa's Durban and Richards Bay, VLSFO availability is said to be normal. Lead times of 5-7 days are recommended for both grades, a source says.

LSMGO availability, however, remains tight in both ports. The grade's deliveries are subject to enquiries there, the source adds.

Offshore bunkering in Algoa Bay has been suspended for three months now. Offshore deliveries there came to a halt in September after the South African Revenue Service (SARS) detained bunker barges over import duty disputes.

Negotiations between offshore bunker suppliers and authorities are underway. A decision is likely to be announced by mid-January, a port agent told ENGINE. However, bunker supply is available in the adjacent Port Elizabeth, where only one supplier is offering deliveries.

Meanwhile, availability of HSFO and LSMGO grades is good in Mozambique's Nacala port, a source says. VLSFO supply is said to be tight there.

Prompt VLSFO supply has been tight in Maputo since last week, while LSMGO is more readily available there.

By Manjula Nair

Photo credit and source: ENGINE
Published: 7 December, 2023

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Methanol

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding receives orders for Japan’s first methanol-fuelled RoRo cargo ship duo

Two ships will be built at the Enoura Plant of MHI’s Shimonoseki Shipyard & Machinery Works in Yamaguchi Prefecture, with scheduled completion and delivery by the end of fiscal 2027.

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Mitsubishi Shipbuilding receives orders for Japan's first methanol-fuelled RoRo cargo ship duo

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding Co., Ltd., a part of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) Group, on Wednesday (19 June) said it has received orders from Toyofuji Shipping and Fukuju Shipping for Japan's first methanol-fueled roll-on/roll-off (RORO) cargo ships. 

The two ships will be built at the Enoura Plant of MHI's Shimonoseki Shipyard & Machinery Works in Yamaguchi Prefecture, with scheduled completion and delivery by the end of fiscal 2027.

The ships will be approximately 169.9 meters in overall length and 30.2 meters in breadth, with 15,750 gross tonnage, and loading capacity for around 2,300 passenger vehicles.

A windscreen at the bow and a vertical stem are used to reduce propulsion resistance, while fuel efficiency is improved by employing MHI's proprietary energy-saving system technology combing high-efficiency propellers and high-performance rudders with reduced resistance. 

The main engine is a high-performance dual-fuel engine that can use both methanol and A heavy fuel oil, reducing CO2 emissions by more than 10% compared to ships with the same hull and powered by fuel oil, contributing to a reduced environmental impact. 

In the future, the use of green methanol(2) may lead to further reduction in CO2 emissions, including throughout the lifecycle of the fuel. Methanol-fueled RORO ships have already entered into service as ocean-going vessels around the world, but this is the first construction of coastal vessels for service in Japan.

In addition, the significant increase in vehicle loading capacity and transport capacity per voyage compared to conventional vessels will provide greater leeway in the ship allocation schedule, securing more holiday and rest time for the crew, thereby contributing to working style reforms.

Mitsubishi Shipbuilding, to address the growing needs from the modal shift in marine transport against the backdrop of CO2 reductions in land transportation, labor shortages, and working style reforms, will continue to work with its business partners to provide solutions for a range of societal issues by building ferries and RORO vessels with excellent fuel efficiency and environmental performance that contribute to stable navigation for customers.

 

Photo credit: Mitsubishi Shipbuilding
Published: 20 June, 2024

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Legal

Shipowner and captain fined for using heavy fuel oil around Svalbard

Foreign shipping company has been fined NOK 1 million for having sailed one of its cargo ships with heavy fuel oil on board within the territorial waters around Svalbard; captain has been fined NOK 30,000.

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RESIZED venti views

A foreign shipping company has been fined NOK 1 million (USD 94,632) for having sailed one of its ships with heavy fuel oil on board within the territorial waters around Svalbard, which is a breach of the Svalbard Environment Act, according to the Governor of Svalbard on Thursday (13 June). 

In addition, the captain has been fined NOK 30,000.

On 6 June 2024, the cargo ship passed into Svalbard's territorial waters, despite the vessel having heavy fuel oil on board, which was established by an inspection carried out by inspectors from the Norwegian Maritime Directorate on the same day.

“This is a breach of Section 82a of the Svalbard Environment Act, which stipulates that ships calling at Svalbard cannot use or have heavy fuel oil as a means of transport. The provision applies to the whole of Svalbard and was introduced on 1 January 2022,” Lars Fause said. 

For the violation of Section 82a of the Svalbard Environment Act, the Governor of Svalbard has issued a forfeiture order against the foreign shipping company of NOK 1,000,000. In addition, the captain of the ship has been fined NOK 30,000.

“It is the first time that the Governor has fined a company in connection with a breach of the heavy oil provision on Svalbard,” he added. 

The fines have not been accepted. The shipping company provided a guarantee for the sum of the fine and was thus allowed to sail down from Svalbard on Wednesday evening, 12 June.

The main hearing in the case is scheduled for the Nord-Troms district court in early October.

 

Photo credit: Venti Views on Unsplash
Published: 20 June, 2024

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Methanol

Maersk and Nike to christen methanol-fuelled boxship at Port of Los Angeles in August

Powered by methanol for its maiden voyage and capable of carrying more than 16,000 containers, the vessel will get its new name at a private ceremony at Port of Los Angeles Outer Harbor.

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Maersk

A.P. Moller – Maersk (Maersk) on Wednesday (19 June) said it will be christening one of the world’s first methanol-enabled vessels when it arrives in Los Angeles this August.

The firm invited the public to go aboard the container ship in Los Angeles.

Powered by methanol for its maiden voyage and capable of carrying more than 16,000 containers (TEU), the vessel will get its new name at a private ceremony at the Port of Los Angeles Outer Harbor on Tuesday, August 27. 

Maersk’s CEO Vincent Clerc will be on hand, alongside special guest speakers from Nike and leading state and local officials. Nike is a partner in the name-giving event.

“Nike is committed to protecting the future of sport and we leverage science-based targets to guide us through our Move to Zero journey,” said Venkatesh Alagirisamy, Nike Chief Supply Chain Officer.

“Operating one of the largest supply chains in the world, we have a responsibility to advance the innovation and use of more sustainable methods that get us closer to zero carbon and zero waste. By working with suppliers like Maersk, who share our commitment to sustainability, we are scaling our use of biofuels in ocean transportation, our main first-mile delivery channel.”

“This event is not only an opportunity to celebrate a remarkable engineering achievement, but the chance to highlight that we can navigate towards more sustainable supply chains if we work together,” said Charles van der Steene, Regional President for Maersk North America.

On Wednesday, August 28, Maersk invites the public to tour the 350-meter-long vessel, which will be sailing from Asia. Visitors will be able to see the Sailors’ living quarters and even stand on the bridge from where the captain controls the vessel. Public tours will require visitors register for a free ticket via an online registration site that will be activated and announced in August.

This is the fifth container vessel in Maersk’s fleet that can sail on green methanol bunker fuel.

 

Photo credit: A.P. Moller – Maersk
Published: 20 June, 2024

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