U.S. withdraws Jones Act blanket waiver for shipping reserve oil

NEW YORK (Dow Jones)–The U.S. government has withdrawn its blanket waiver from the Jones Act, which would have allowed foreign vessels to ship crude oil out of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve under the emergency oil-sale plan announced Thursday.

An amended notice of sale filed by the Energy Department, setting rules for the sale in August of 30 million barrels of crude oil, removes the blanket waiver. Instead it provides an address for companies to seek a waiver from the requirement that only U.S.-owned and U.S.-manned ships are allowed to move U.S. goods, including crude, between U.S. ports.

Previous SPR sales have included Jones Act waivers to allow for greater flexibility in getting the oil to market.

The change came after a maritime group, the American Maritime Partnership, criticized the move and said there is sufficient U.S.-flagged capacity to move the SPR crude. The group didn’t have immediate comment Friday on the rule change.

– By David Bird, Dow Jones Newswires

Pictured: MV Sunshine State