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Bunker Fuel

JLC China Bunker Market Monthly Report (August 2023)

Country sold roughly 1.80 million mt of bonded bunker fuel in the month, with the daily sales rebounding by 11.80% from the previous month to about 58,065 mt, JLC’s data indicates.

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Beijing-based commodity market information provider JLC Network Technology Co. recently shared its JLC China Bunker monthly report for August 2023 with Manifold Times through an exclusive arrangement:

Bunker Fuel Demand

China’s bonded bunker fuel sales rally in August

China’s bonded bunker fuel sales rallied in August, because of multiple factors.

The country sold roughly 1.80 million mt of bonded bunker fuel in the month, with the daily sales rebounding by 11.80% from the previous month to about 58,065 mt, JLC’s data indicates.

The sales by Chimbusco, Sinopec Zhoushan, SinoBunker and China ChangJiang Bunker (Sinopec) were 580,000 mt, 650,000 mt, 80,000 mt and 40,000 mt, respectively. Meanwhile, suppliers with regional bunkering licenses tallied about 450,000 mt of bonded bunker fuel sales.

Though the negative impact of bad weather lingered in Zhoushan and Ningbo, more shipowners came to refuel as bonded bunker fuel prices in the two regions were more competitive than those in Singapore. Meanwhile, the barging capacity at Shandong ports recovered to some degree, which also drove up the sales. On the other hand, however, the barging capacity at southern ports was insufficient amid tighter customs inspections, leading to a dip in the sales in South China.

China’s bonded bunker fuel exports drop in July

China’s bonded bunker fuel exports dropped in July, because of inclement weather and some other factors, despite a modest increase in domestic low-sulfur fuel oil (LSFO) production.

The country exported about 1.62 million mt of bonded bunker fuel in the month, down by 20.82% month on month and 4.63% year on year, JLC estimated, with reference to data from the General Administration of Customs of PRC (GACC).

Specifically, heavy bunker fuel exports amounted to about 1.53 million mt, accounting for 94.70% of the total, while light bunker fuel exports settled at 85,700 mt, making up 5.30%.

Regarding the exports by supplier, enterprises with national bunkering licenses exported roughly 1.30 million mt, accounting for 80.73% of the country’s total, with Sinopec Fuel Oil and Chimbusco taking 71.68%. Meanwhile, enterprises with regional licenses exported 311,500 mt, accounting for 19.27%, with PetroChina Fuel Oil (Zhoushan, Shanghai and Guangzhou) taking 194,800 mt which occupied 12.07% of China’s exports and 62.54% of regional suppliers’ total.

Bunkering business at some Chinese ports was disturbed by rains and typhoons, dragging down China’s bonded bunker fuel exports. Meanwhile, some shipowners’ refueling demand was also depressed by bad weather, which added to the downward pressure on the exports.

On the other hand, domestic bunker fuel supply increased moderately amid larger LSFO production, putting a cap on the decline in the exports. China produced about 1.35 million mt of LSFO in July, up by 61,000 mt or 4.73% month on month, with the daily output up by 1.35% to 43,548 mt, JLC’s data shows.

In the first seven months, China’s bonded bunker fuel exports totaled about 12.03 million mt, growing by 6.38% from the same months in 2022, slowing down from a boost of 8.32% in the first six months.

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Domestic-trade heavy bunker fuel demand climbs further in Aug

Domestic-trade heavy bunker fuel demand climbed further in August, as most shipowners resumed voyages after typhoons and bullish sentiment popped up in the shipping market. Domestic-trade heavy bunker fuel demand increased to 330,000 mt in the month, up by 20,000 mt or 6.45% from the previous month, JLC’s data shows.

On the contrary, domestic-trade light bunker fuel demand shrank as continuously rising prices somewhat deterred buyers. Domestic-trade light bunker fuel demand settled at 130,000 mt in August, descending by 10,000 mt or 7.14% month on month.

Bunker Fuel Supply

China boosts bonded bunker fuel imports from Russia in July

China sharply boosted its bonded bunker fuel imports from Russia in July, because of large discounts on Russian cargoes.

Russia became the biggest bonded bunker fuel supplier to China in the month, supplying 275,000 mt to the latter, surging by 253.02% year on year and accounting for 82.34% of China’s total imports, JLC estimated, with reference to data from the General Administration of Customs of PRC (GACC). Chinese importers placed more orders for cargoes from Russia, because of significant price advantages for Russian cargoes.

Japan replaced Singapore as the second largest supplier by shipping 46,300 mt of bonded bunker fuel to China, rising by 18.72% month on month and accounting for 13.86% of China’s total.

South Korea remained in the third place with 10,700 mt, accounting for 3.20%, despite a plunge from 70,900 mt in June 2023. Meanwhile, inflows from Singapore tumbled to 2,000 mt, rapidly down from 140,100 mt in the previous month, sending the country to the fourth place. The imports accounted for 0.60% of the total.

Despite an upsurge in imports from Russia and Singapore, China’s total bonded bunker fuel imports dropped to 334,000 mt in July, a cut of 26.33% month on month and 5.28% year on year. Underlying the decline was an increase in domestic low-sulfur fuel oil (LSFO) output and relatively high freight rates for imported cargoes.

Domestic LSFO supply increased as Chinese refiners ramped up their production to quicken the utilization of export quotas, and production basically met demand for low-sulfur bunker fuel. China’s LSFO output settled at 1.35 million mt in the month, gaining 61,000 mt or 4.73% month on month, with the daily output up by 1.35% to 43,548 mt, JLC’s data shows.

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Domestic-trade heavy bunker fuel supply increases in Aug

Chinese blenders supplied about 370,000 mt of domestic-trade heavy bunker fuel in August, an increase of 10,000 mt or 2.78% from a month earlier, JLC’s data shows. Blenders bought more low-sulfur residual oil as blendstock amid lower prices, and they continued to raise their bunker fuel output when downstream buyers increased purchases with a bullish attitude.

At the same time, domestic-trade marine gas oil (MGO) supply stabilized at 170,000 mt. Light bunker fuel supply was still relatively abundant amid good coking margins.

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Bunker Prices, Profits

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Editor
Yvette Luo
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Sales (Beijing)
Tony Tang
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Sales (Singapore)
Ginny Teo
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JLC Network Technology Co., Ltd is recognized as the leading information provider in China. We specialized in providing the transparent, high-value, authoritative market intelligence and professional analysis in commodity market. Our expertise covers oil, gas, coal, chemical, plastic, rubber, fertilizer and metal industry, etc.

JLC China Bunker Fuel Market Monthly Report is published by JLC Network Technology Co., Ltd every month on China bunker market, demand, supply, margin, freight index, forecast and so on. The report provides full-scale & concise insight into China bunker oil market.

All rights reserved. No portion of this publication may be photocopied, reproduced, retransmitted, put into a computer system or otherwise redistributed without prior authorization from JLC.

Related: JLC China Bunker Market Monthly Report (July 2023)
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Note: China-based commodity market information provider JLC Technology has been providing Singapore bunkering publication Manifold Times China bunker volume data since 2020. Data from that period is available here.

Photo credit: JLC Network Technology
Published: 13 September, 2023

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LNG Bunkering

Titan completes first STS LNG bunkering operation in Cuxhaven

Port of Cuxhaven in Germany had previously only seen LNG operations conducted via truck and currently only permits LNG bunkering at one berth, says Titan.

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Titan completes first STS LNG bunkering operation in Cuxhaven

LNG bunker fuel supplier Titan on Thursday (11 July) said it completed the first-ever LNG bunkering operation by ship in the port of Cuxhaven.

Titan’s bunker vessel Optimus successfully delivered LNG to dredger Vox Ariane operated by its long-term client Van Oord. 

“Our ship-to-ship bunkering in Cuxhaven represents a pioneering step in the region's LNG infrastructure development, as the port had previously only seen LNG operations conducted via truck and currently only permits LNG bunkering at one berth,” it said in a social media post. 

“LNG infrastructure development is part of a broader trend, with more ports across Germany adopting LNG operations to support shipping’s clean fuels transition.”

Titan added the improved LNG bunkering capabilities in Cuxhaven, a Niedersachsen Ports GmbH & Co. KG port, also opened up the pathway to maritime decarbonisation via liquified biomethane (LBM) and then renewable e-methane going forward.

 

Photo credit: Titan
Published: 12 July, 2024

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LNG Bunkering

UECC “Auto Achieve” receives first LNG bunker fuel delivery by barge in home country

Firm said it received the first ever supply of LNG by barge to their multi-fuel LNG battery hybrid car carrier in the Port of Drammen, Norway.

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UECC “Auto Achieve” receives first LNG bunker fuel delivery by barge in home country

Norwegian roll-on/roll-off shipping line United European Car Carriers (UECC) on Wednesday (10 July) said it received the first ever supply of LNG by barge to their multi-fuel LNG battery hybrid car carrier Auto Achieve in the Port of Drammen on 4 July.

The firm said this was the first time UECC received LNG by barge to any of their vessels in their home country Norway. 

“We also believe that it was the first time LNG was delivered by barge to any vessel in Drammen, and most likely the entire Oslofjord,” UECC said in a social media post.

The LNG was supplied by the Molgas Energy Holding vessel Pioneer Knutsen, owned by Knutsen Group OAS.

“UECC is very pleased to see the expansion of the LNG barge network in Norway,” it said. 

 

Photo credit: UECC
Published: 12 July, 2024

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FuelEU

OceanScore reveals ship segments set to feel EUR 1.3 billion sting of FuelEU penalties

Container segment will bear the brunt of FuelEU costs, accounting for 29% of gross penalties, followed by RoPax on 14% with tankers and bulkers each on 13%, says firm.

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OceanScore Managing Director Albrecht Grell

Hamburg-based technology platform OceanScore on Tuesday (9 July) said the financial impact of FuelEU Maritime is focusing the minds of shipping companies as they face potential penalties for non-compliance with greenhouse gas (GHG) intensity reduction targets - and OceanScore has identified those segments set to be hit hardest.

The following is an article by OceanScore elaborating on the matter:

Vessels in the passenger/cruise, container, RoPax, bulker and tanker segments will have significant cost exposure from the complex regulation due to be implemented from 1 January next year, despite a relatively modest initial target of a 2% cut in GHG intensity, according to OceanScore.

The firm’s data analytics team has calculated that shipping will rack up total FuelEU penalties of €1.345 billion in 2025 through analysis of the 13,000 vessels over 5000gt trading within and into the EU/EEA that are subject to the regulation. This is based on data on trading patterns and fuel mix from 2022 - the last full year currently available.

Containers bear burden

The team has been able to determine FuelEU compliance balances and resulting penalties for each vessel using OceanScore’s proprietary data modelling incorporating AIS data, Thetis emissions data, bunker intelligence and advanced analytics/AI. It has factored in the likely fuel mix for each vessel between EU ports and to/from the EU, as well as in ports.

Vessels will be hit with a penalty of €2400 per tonne of VLSFO-equivalent for failing to meet the initial 2% reduction target relative to a 2020 baseline for average well-to-wake GHG intensity from fleet energy consumption of 91.16 gCO2e per megajoule (MJ) - or emissions per energy unit. The GHG intensity requirement applies to 100% of energy used on voyages and port calls within the EU/EEA and 50% of voyages into and out of the bloc.

As with the EU Emissions Trading System (EU ETS), it is the container segment that will bear the brunt of FuelEU costs, accounting for 29% of gross penalties, followed by RoPax on 14% with tankers and bulkers each on 13%.

“It is critical for shipping companies to determine a baseline for expected FuelEU costs to secure proper planning and budgeting processes to compare different mitigation options, as well as to decide what to do with outstanding compliance balances,” says OceanScore Managing Director Albrecht Grell.

“This will require, to a higher degree than the EU ETS, a corporate strategy to determine how to reduce the compliance balance/deficit, how to commercialise a surplus and deal with deficits that remain.”

Wide spread of vessel liabilities

OceanScore has found that liabilities per vessel will differ widely across the various segments due to increasingly diversified fuel choices, including greater uptake of biofuels and LNG. Passenger vessels will be penalised the most with an average of €520,000 per vessel annually, followed by RoPax at €480,000 and RoRo at €314,000, with an average penalty for container ships of only €214,000, according to OceanScore.

Grell points out there are also massive discrepancies between vessels within these segments, with a number of ships in the passenger and RoPax segments exposed to penalties of between €1.8m and €2.5m, and payment obligations for some container ships approaching €1m. This is driven by higher energy consumption simply due to vessel size and trading profile.

While penalties will arise from so-called compliance deficits for vessels using conventional fuels, surpluses totalling an estimated €669m will be generated mainly by vessels fuelled by LNG and LPG with significantly lower carbon intensity.

LNG carriers will account for 78% of the total market surplus and gas carriers 8%, while a further 8% will be generated by container ships that have seen a modest uptake in alternative fuels in recent years.

Pooling can halve costs for the industry

Taking into account this estimated compliance surplus, the net cost of FuelEU penalties for shipping from 2025 would be €680m, which indicates that pooling of vessels can roughly halve the gross burden for the industry.

Penalties will, in segments typically using conventional fuels with comparable carbon intensities such as HFO, LFO or MDO, be roughly proportional to the overall fuel consumption, thus correlating with the EU ETS cost.

Initial costs of FuelEU for most conventionally fuelled vessels, prior to pooling, will be around one-third of those associated with the EU ETS next year when the latter regulation will have 70% phase-in. But ultimately FuelEU is likely to prove a much more costly affair as the requirement for GHG intensity cuts rises to 6% by 2030 and then accelerates to reach 80% by 2050.

“It is therefore incumbent on shipowners to define their strategies not only towards fuel choices and the use of onshore power but also towards handling of residual compliance balances such as pooling, banking and borrowing of balances, to mitigate the financial impact of FuelEU. However, pooling will also come at a cost, while banking and borrowing will incur interest costs and only push liabilities into the future,” Grell explains.

‘Sound administrative processes’

He further points out that pooling compensations paid between different shipping companies will effectively divert cash flow away from the EU that it would otherwise have earned from FuelEU penalties – but that this effect is intended by the regulator to “reward” early adopters of clean fuels.

Another factor that will curb potential income for the EU from this regulation is that the compliance gap has been reduced to only 1.6% by 2022, as average GHG intensity from shipping has come down by 0.4% to 90.82 gCO2e per MJ, mainly due to increased LNG carrier calls to Europe after gas supplies via pipelines from Russia were halted when the latter invaded Ukraine. Given this trend and increasing adoption of biofuels, the 2% compliance gap will probably be closed before the first tightening of reduction targets in 2030.

Grell says the priority for shipping companies, especially at this early stage while cost exposure is relatively low, is to get to grips with the complexity of the regulation and tackle the risks arising from the fact the party liable for penalties - the DoC holder, or possibly shipowner - is not the one responsible for emissions, which is typically the charterer.

“As well as having costs oversight, companies require reliable monitoring and reporting mechanisms with high-quality emissions data. They must also have in place complex contractual arrangements and sound administrative processes to manage compliance and mitigate the financial consequences of the new regulation,” Grell concludes.

Related: FuelEU: New regulation leaves DoC holder with fuel liabilities risk, says OceanScore
Related: ‘Big opportunity’ for bunker traders, suppliers on upcoming FuelEU regulation, forecasts OceanScore

 

Photo credit: OceanScore
Published: 12 July, 2024

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