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Strait of Hormuz: the world’s most important oil artery

Iran has said it would block the Strait of Hormuz if it was barred from using the strategic waterway through which about a fifth of oil that is consumed globally passes. The threat from an Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) commander followed a U.S. announcement on Monday that it would end exemptions granted last year to eight buyers of Iranian oil and demanding they stop purchases by May 1 or face sanctions. Oil prices have surged to six-month highs. The Strait of Hormuz, a vital shipping route linking Middle East ...

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Bunker Market Looking at More Upswing

Oil prices hit their highest in about six months on Tuesday as sources said Gulf OPEC members were ready to raise output only if there was demand before offsetting any shortfall following a U.S. decision to end waivers for buyers of Iranian crude. The United States on Monday demanded buyers of Iranian oil stop purchases by May 1 or face sanctions, ending six months of waivers which allowed Iran’s eight biggest buyers, most of them in Asia, to continue importing limited volumes. U.S. President Donald Trump said he was confident ...

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A Ban on Dirty Shipping Fuel Is Coming. So Why Are Prices Surging?

Demand for the shipping industry’s main fuel is widely expected to collapse like never before in 2020, so it might come as a surprise that its value is soaring. High-sulfur fuel oil at the Dutch port of Rotterdam in January is now trading at about $16 a barrel less than crude oil, close to the strongest in 18 months, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. The discount was $28.50 less than a year ago, since when prices have been rallying steadily. Regulations starting January will bar most ships from using ...

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New Swedish Shipping Company Formed – Wallenius Sol

Wallenius Sol is a new shipping company that will transport forestry products and other goods in a network covering the Gulf of Bothnia, the Baltic Sea and the North Sea. Founders are the two shipping companies Wallenius and Swedish Orient Line, SOL. It’s an investment to strengthen the infrastructure for the needs of Finnish and Swedish industry. The first customers to sign long-term agreements are Stora Enso and Metsä Board. ”Together we can offer a strong mix of experience and competence, which can support a growing forest industry”, says Ragnar ...

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Shipping on Rhine in Germany hampered by low water levels

Cargo vessels cannot navigate much of the Rhine in Germany when fully loaded after dry weather caused a drop in water levels. Traders said that from Duisburg and Cologne to south Germany the Rhine is too shallow for normal sailings, which means vessel operators impose surcharges on freight rates for cargo owners. The Rhine is a major shipping route for commodities such as grains, minerals, coal and fuel products including heating oil. German companies faced supply bottlenecks and production problems last year after a drought and heatwave led to unusually ...

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LNG Vessel Completes 6,000th Neopanamax Transit at the Panama Canal

Yesterday, the Panama Canal welcomed its 6,000th Neopanamax vessel through the Expanded Canal, underscoring the route’s ability to accommodate the highly-dynamic liquefied natural gas (LNG) segment, which first transited the waterway following the inauguration of the Expanded Canal less than three years ago. The LNG vessel Energy Liberty completed the milestone transit today travelling southbound from the Atlantic to the Pacific Ocean. Constructed in 2018, the vessel has a cargo capacity of 165,000 m3 and measures 300 meters in length and 49 meters in beam. “Once again, we are proud ...

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Global Ship Lease Announces New Long-Term Charter Agreement

Global Ship Lease, Inc., a containership charter owner, has agreed a minimum 30-month / maximum 38-month charter with Maersk Line for the 2000-built, 5,936 TEU containership Tasman. The new charter is expected to commence in July 2019 on the completion of the current charter and is subject to a further 12-month extension at the charterer’s option. The charter is expected to generate approximately $5.3 million of Adjusted EBITDA for the median firm period and an additional $4.4 million if the 12-month extension option is exercised. George Youroukos, Executive Chairman of ...

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Qatar to start construction program for 100-plus LNG ships for 2024 output target

Qatar Petroleum said this week it has issued an invitation to tender for the construction of more than 100 LNG vessels to help meet its expected output increase to 110 million mt a year by 2024 from 77 million mt/year now. The tender also includes shipping requirements for the offtake agreement of Ocean LNG, the Qatar Petroleum joint venture with ExxonMobil, from the Golden Pass terminal in the US, which is under construction and will be completed by 2024. The shipping tender also includes options for replacing Qatar Petroleum’s existing ...

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S. Korea: Shipbuilding region support program extended two years

A program supporting regions suffering as a result of the shipbuilding slump will be extended for two years, the government announced. Last year, the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy designated a number of regions largely dependent on shipbuilding as special industrial crisis zones. They were provided with employment assistance and tax incentives. The designated regions include Mokpo in South Jeolla, Ulsan and a number of areas in South Gyeongsang, such as Geoje, Tongyeong and Changwon. The extension came after Korean shipbuilding companies suffered a slump and the regions were ...

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Saudi Ports Achieve Remarkable Growth in Handling Operations During Q1 2019

Saudi Ports have registered a notable growth in handling operations during the first quarter of 2019. The total handled cargo amounted to 66,335,121 tons, an increase of 7.62%, while the number of containers exported and imported reached 1,682,806, an increase of 7.02%, compared to the same period last year 2018. The ports fall under the supervision of Saudi Ports Authority (MAWANI). According to the statistical index issued by MAWANI, the number of vessels in Saudi ports during the first quarter of 2019 reached 2,983 , the number of passengers 320,191, ...

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Asian crude buyers fear tighter supplies as Iran waivers vanish

China’s refiners said they were awaiting government orders on Iran crude oil imports, with some pushback against sanctions likely, while India said it had an alternative buying plan in place to make up for supply losses following Washington’s decision to not extend waivers on Iranian crude. While Japan said it does not see any immediate need for it to release its strategic petroleum reserves to alleviate supply concerns, South Korea plans to find ways to convince the US to consider extending the waivers. “China opposes the unilateral sanctions and so-called ...

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Jet fuel from Singapore heads to Europe as Asia remains oversupplied

Jet fuel from the Far East is set to head to Northwest Europe in May despite unviable arbitrage economics as Asian market participants continue to grapple with a persistent supply overhang. Demand for the middle distillate in Asia is typically at an annual low in the second quarter of the year, leaving the Far East with a glut of surplus product, but few outlets for these cargoes. According to shipping sources, Shell took the BW Galatea to load 90,000 mt of jet from Singapore to the UK Continent on April ...

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Citi says US and China will nail deal, aiding commodities

The outlook for commodities is bullish, according to Citigroup Inc., which expects raw materials to be supported by a confluence of positive factors including the agreement of a trade deal between Washington and Beijing, improved demand from China, and a weaker dollar. The bank’s base case is that the U.S. and China will agree to end their protracted trade fight by end-June, paving the way for tariffs to be lifted, analysts including Ed Morse said in a report. A deal between the two economies is now “on course” for the ...

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Oil falls from 6-month high on signs market not as tight as feared

Oil prices fell on Wednesday after a report allayed concerns about tightening supply, ending a rally that took prices to their highest since early November on concerns that OPEC output cuts and sanctions would take too much oil out of the market. The International Energy Agency (IEA), a watchdog for oil consuming countries, said in a statement on Tuesday that markets are “adequately supplied” and that “global spare production capacity remains at comfortable levels.” Also weighing on prices, U.S. crude stocks rose by 6.9 million barrels last week, more than ...

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IEA: Global spare oil production capacity at ‘comfortable levels’

The International Energy Agency is monitoring developments in global oil markets, and notes that markets are now adequately supplied, and that global spare production capacity remains at comfortable levels. Further tightening of sanctions on Iran will have an impact on its export capacity. Iranian shipments of crude and condensates are running around 1.1 million barrels a day (mb/d) in April, 300 000 barrels a day lower than March, and 1.7 mb/d lower than May 2018. As a result of OPEC’s high compliance rate with the agreed supply cuts in the ...

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