Maersk Tankers Readies Its Pool for IMO 2020 (26 SEP 2019)

Danish tanker owner and operator Maersk Tankers has prepared its pools to accommodate scrubber-fitted vessels trading alongside vessels that will use fuels compliant with IMO 2020.

Maersk Tankers uses the Bunker Adjustment methodology to distribute payments to pool partners based on the bunker consumption of their vessels compared to the pool average.

To maintain a fair distribution – both for scrubber-fitted vessels and vessels using compliant fuels, the pool partners have unanimously agreed to change the pool agreement, the company said.

As explained, an adjustment mechanism was introduced so that vessels are compensated appropriately for their relative fuel efficiency and costs. The mechanism will be based on invoiced bunker fuel prices and quantities and the actual relative consumption of the vessels to achieve a distribution which reflects the fuel economics available from the market.

“It was important for us to find a fair distribution system which reflects the market value of scrubbers and fuel cost savings while maintaining all types of vessels trading in the same pool,” Ulrich Schittek, Head of Partner Relations at Maersk Tankers, said.

Some 20 vessels across Maersk Tankers’ pools are expected to be fitted with scrubbers by January 1, 2020, when the new IMO regulations come into force.

The upcoming sulphur regulation states that the limit for sulphur content in fuel oil used on board vessels will change from 3.50% to a maximum of 0.50% from January 2020. As a result, the world’s shipping fleet is required either to have scrubbers installed or to use compliant fuel with a maximum sulphur content of 0.5%. The amount of different fuel grades and volatility in prices are likely to increase as a consequence, Maersk said.