The Malaysian government is making plans to improve the country’s bunkering sector and aims to catch up with Singapore’s performance in the similar industry, says its Minister of Transport Anthony Loke Siew Fook.
Loke was giving a speech at the World Maritime Week 2019 National Celebrations at the KL Convention Centre on Tuesday (9 September) when he shared plans.
“Over the years we think we have lost out in terms of bunkering, because all ships coming to ports and passing by the Straits of Malacca, they need to refuel, but most of the time all these bunkering is happening in Singapore, so we are losing out in terms of business to our southern neighbour,” he reportedly said.
“We need to develop a whole ecosystem in terms of supplies, regulations, and enforcement, and we have to give confidence to the shipping lines that bunkering in Malaysia is safe and that we can be transparent.
“Talks are ongoing and it is not that we don’t have bunkering [facilities], we do; but I think we are not big enough and there is a lot of room for improvement, a lot of potential we can tap into because yearly there are so many ships passing by the Straits of Malacca and all that is a business opportunity for Malaysia.
“We already had our initial meetings at the official level between the Ministry of Transport and with the Domestic Trade Ministry, and of course that will lay the foundation.
“I will have a meeting with the minister himself to finalise the details and come up with comprehensive policies on how to move our bunkering industry forward.”
Loke, also the Chairman of the Malaysian Shipping and Ports Council, earlier said the country will explore initiatives such as the use of mass flowmeters (MFM) on board bunker vessels, and more, at a local bunkering event in August.
Photo credit: Port Klang Authority
Published: 11 September, 2019
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