By Roslan Khasawneh SINGAPORE, April 26 (Reuters) – Singapore’s Maritime Port Authority (MPA) is set to announce it is making use of mass-flow-meters (MFM) mandatory onboard marine gasoil barges used to refuel large ships, two people with knowledge of the matter said.
The announcement will be made at a gala dinner in the city state organised by the International Bunker Industry Association (IBIA) later on Thursday, the people said. They spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorised to speak to the media.
It wasn’t immediately clear from which date the MPA will enforce the use of MFMs – designed to minimise inaccuracies and errors in measuring quantities delivered – on gasoil bunker barges. The people with knowledge of the matter said the date was likely to be either Jan. 1 or July 1 next year.
The MPA did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment.
Singapore, the world’s largest marine refuelling hub, in 2017 became the first port to mandate the use of MFMs on fuel oil bunker barges licensed by the MPA in an effort to boost efficiency and transparency of the ship refuelling process, also known as bunkering.
Before they were introduced in 2017, some industry participants were concerned the new systems would drive away some of Singapore’s bunkering traffic as a result of higher costs.
However, the increased transparency has helped boost Singapore’s status as the world’s top marine refuelling hub. In 2017 the port set record sales volumes of marine fuels for the third straight year.
The use of the meters on fuel oil bunkering barges has also led to a crackdown on shortfalls in deliveries to customers, which has seen three of the top 10 MPA-licensed bunker fuel suppliers lose their licenses in 2017. (Reporting by Roslan Khasawneh Editing by Kenneth Maxwell)
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