February 10th 2015
Bunker quality is improving, says the International Bunker Industry Association (IBIA).
Speaking at the IBIA Dinner last night, chairman Jens Maul Jorgensen said early results for this year showed off spec samples running at 8% compared to last year’s 10%.
Jorgensen said that more suppliers were using the quality standards ISO 2010 and ISO 2012 and that more distillate samples were being tested. Falling crude values meant that refiners were less likely to blend down products, he added.
Given that off-spec samples reached an all-time high in 2013 (a quarter of tested samples failed to reach the required standard), it was no surprise that bunkers were coming under increasing scrutiny.
But in response, the IMO MEPC 67 meeting agreed to establish a correspondence group to develop draft guidance for assuring the quality of fuel oil delivered for use on board ships, and to consider the adequacy of the current legal framework in MARPOL Annex VI for assuring the quality of bunkers, the chairman said.
In other comments, Jorgensen said the marine industry’s response to the collapse of OW Bunker had helped many ex-OW staff employees find new positions.
IBIA had pitched in by offering free membership to the “unemployed OWB employees” and IBIA ASIA had arranged information meetings.
“[It was] thanks to the industry support [that] the majority of OWB staff found new employment. It shows that we are one big family,” Jorgensen said.
IBIA’s annual event is held in London at the start of International Petroleum week. This year’s dinner attracted 1,069 guests.
At its annual general meeting held on the same day, Patrick Holloway (Weber Wentzel), Nigel Draffin (LQM) and John Sterling (World Fuel Services) were elected to the IBIA board.
They are replacing outgoing board members Simon Neo, Ciric Cheung and Trevor Harrison.