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Singapore bunkering sector in milestone with first ship-to-containership LNG bunkering operation

24 Mar 2021

Singapore’s bunkering sector reached a milestone on Wednesday (24 March) with the first ship-to-containership liquefied natural gas (LNG) bunkering operation in Asia.

The operation was undertaken today by CMA CGM and FueLNG, a joint venture between Keppel Offshore & Marine Ltd (Keppel O&M) and Shell Eastern Petroleum (Pte) Ltd, and the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA).

The containership CMA CGM SCANDOLA was fuelled with 7,100m3 of LNG from FueLNG Bellina, Singapore’s first LNG bunkering vessel, in the marine fuel delivery operation.

“The use of more sustainable fuels is an important element of the decarbonisation strategy,” said Senior Minister of State for Transport and Foreign Affairs, Chee Hong Tat, who attended the launch of the bunkering operation.

“As the shipping industry explores alternative zero-carbon fuels, LNG is a viable transitional fuel. As a global bunkering hub, we are pleased to partner CMA CGM, FueLNG, Keppel Offshore & Marine and Shell Eastern Petroleum, to provide more sustainable bunkering solutions for the shipping industry.

“It also marks another major milestone as Asia’s first ship-to-ship LNG bunkering operation with simultaneous cargo operations.”

CMA CGM SCANDOLA is the first of six new 15,000-TEU LNG-powered containerships which CMA CGM Group has lined-up to be bunkered in Singapore this year. These ships will be deployed on CMA CGM’s MEX 1 service between Asia and the Mediterranean.

It is also the first vessel in Asia to conduct simultaneous container loading and discharging operations alongside LNG bunkering operations, shortening port stay time.

From Singapore, she will set sail with over 14,800 (twenty-foot equivalent units) containers, comprising household goods, electronic items, machinery and personal protection equipment for the Mediterranean.

This is also the first ship-to-ship operation for FueLNG Bellina. Designed and built by Keppel O&M, the 7,500m3 FueLNG Bellina provides more options for shipowners and operators to bunker LNG in Singapore.

FueLNG aims to provide a total of about 30 to 50 ship-to-ship LNG bunkering operations in 2021, extending its track record of over 300 truck-to-ship LNG bunkering operations so far.

Stephane Courquin, Chief Executive Officer of CMA CGM Asia Pacific, said, “CMA CGM is committed to the energy transition in the shipping industry. Today, LNG is the most advanced solution when it comes to preserving air quality. This technology is one of the first steps towards achieving CMA CGM Group’s ambitious 2050 objective of carbon neutrality. CMA CGM SCANDOLA is the first of more CMA CGM-operated LNG vessels that will undergo simultaneous cargo and LNG bunkering operations in Singapore. The Group’s fleet of LNG containerships will grow to 32 by the end of 2022.”

Quah Ley Hoon, Chief Executive of MPA, said, “The use of LNG as a marine fuel is fast gaining traction worldwide amid a global push to use cleaner shipping fuels. As the world’s top bunkering and transshipment hub port, MPA is pleased that we are able to facilitate Asia’s very first ship-to-ship LNG bunkering operation with simultaneous cargo operations.  We will continue to work with the industry to promote LNG bunkering in Singapore and drive the transition to more sustainable shipping.”

Chris Ong, Chairman of FueLNG and CEO of Keppel O&M, added, “We are pleased to kickstart ship-to-ship LNG bunkering operations for the FueLNG Bellina in Singapore, which allows us to fuel larger vessels such as containerships. We have a number of ships lined up for FueLNG Bellina’s next bunkering operations, reflecting the strong demand for LNG bunkering in Singapore. LNG is an important part of the clean energy transition and this is in line with Keppel’s Vision 2030 to pursue greener energy developments.”

Tahir Faruqui, Director, FueLNG and Head of Shell Downstream LNG, said, “It’s crucial that the shipping sector employs the cleanest fuels available today and we continue to strengthen our network to supply our customers with cleaner burning fuels. In addition, vessels using LNG as a fuel should be comparatively more robust in addressing the financial impact of any CO2 levy potentially imposed in the future. Singapore is a new addition within our global LNG bunkering network of eight countries and nine ports. We plan to double this bunkering infrastructure on key international trade routes by the mid-2020s so that we can support the sector with the capabilities to tackle emissions with urgency.”

Related: INTERVIEW: 80-90 times YOY growth for Singapore LNG bunkering volumes in 2021, says FueLNG

 

Photo credit: CMA CGM APAC
Published: 24 March, 2021

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