News Round Up 16 March 2020

Lloyd’s List: Scrubber economics disrupted by coronavirus and Opec plus-stoked oil slide

“If the current very low sulphur fuel oil to high-sulphur fuel oil price spread continues for another six months or more, scrubber fittings will prove to be a wrong bet for shipowners,” said one senior dry bulk shipping executive.


Hong Kong Shipping Gazette – News story in full – Ships skip JNPT due to virus outbreak and scrubber retrofits

JAWAHARLAL Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) has reported that some mainline containerships as well as feeders are skipping calls at the facility on account of the coronavirus outbreak, as well as the effects of IMO 2020 removing vessels from service for scrubber retrofits to lower maritime fuel emissions.

Gateway Terminals India (GTI), one of the five terminals operating at JNPT, has reported four “skips” already, reported Seatrade Maritime News, Colchester, UK.

“GTI has told us that some more vessels may skip the port in coming months as they undergo scrubber retrofits to comply with the rule on using low-sulphur fuel oil,” said JNPT chairman Sanjay Sethi.

These issues could hurt JNPT’s ability to handle more containers in the financial year due to end on March 31 this year, than it did in fiscal 2018-19. The port handled 4.63 million TEU between April 2019 and February 2020, down from the 4.67 million TEU processed during the same period in FY2018-19. For the full FY19, JNPT handled 5.13 million TEU.


Bunker Spot GLOBAL: IMO expects 77% drop in ships’ SOx emissions as a result of 0.50% cap

The International Maritime Organization expects that the new 0.50% global sulphur cap will mean a 77% drop in overall SOx emissions from ships and the big shipping associations are ‘cautiously optimistic’ about the industry’s ability to cope with the regulations, according to a statement issued by BIMCO.


Splash 24/7: Bunker price spread edges into double-digit territory

The average price spread between low and high sulphur fuel at the world’s four largest bunkering hubs ducked into double-digit territory for the first time today. Bunker prices continued to decline today, although not in the sensational manner they fell back on Monday where prices fell by record numbers.

Vessel Performance News: ICS reminds shipowners of carriage ban on non-compliant fuel

Port state control authorities will begin to enforce the IMO’s 2020 sulphur cap from March 1, making it an offence for ships to carry fuel that contains a sulphur content higher than 0.5 per cent unless the ship has an exhaust gas cleaning system (EGCS).


Lloyd’s List: US imports of Russian oil exceed Saudi shipments

US refineries are taking advantage of the IMO 2020 global fuel oil regulations to secure heavily discounted high-sulphur fuel oil and then use it to produce middle distillates and gasoline at higher margins.

Lloyd’s List: The week in charts: Freight prices jump, sulphur-fuel spread contracts

Ocean freight spot prices from Rotterdam to Shanghai rose 24% in the past week, 45% higher than for the same period last year. Meanwhile, the spread between high and lower sulphur marine fuel oil is contracting, which has slashed earnings premiums for scrubber-fitted vessels.

Lloyd’s List: IMO sulphur cap highlights OW Bunker collapse lessons

Assessing counterparty risk remains one of the better protective steps that can be taken, as is checking supplier contracts and seeking to renegotiate them.

S&P Global: HSFO crack trades above minus $10/b for first time since July

High sulphur fuel oil cracks traded above minus $10/b during European trade Monday for the first time in eight months, as limited production and sustained demand for HSFO outside the bunker pool kept prices relatively buoyant.


Bunkerspot Global: ASIA PACIFIC: Sinopec refinery begins VLSFO production
The Guangzhou refinery has delivered its first cargo of very low sulphur fuel oil.