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Speech by Senior Minister of State for Transport Dr Lam Pin Min at the 20th Singapore International Bunkering Conference and Exhibition (SIBCON)

03 Oct 2018 Speeches

Distinguished Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

1.     Good Morning.

2.     I am happy to join all of you here at the Singapore International Bunkering Conference and Exhibition. In its 20th instalment, SIBCON has grown from strength to strength, reflecting the rising prominence of the bunker industry globally.

Singapore – World’s Leading Bunkering Port

3.     With IMO’s 2020 sulphur emission requirement on the horizon, it is timely that we are gathered here as a community. We are here to celebrate our successes. We are here more importantly to forge consensus on how to grow the industry.

4.     As one of the world’s leading bunkering ports, we believe that standards help the industry thrive. Hence, Singapore takes our responsibility to uphold high standards seriously. That is why last January, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) mandated the use of mass flow meters, or MFM in short, for delivering marine fuel oil (MFO). At that time, no other port required the use of MFM. Some thought we were too bold. But we were confident that it was the right move, and a step in the right direction. The use of MFM has since made MFO deliveries more efficient. And buyers are more assured of the volumes delivered.

5.     Singapore’s bunker sales volume affirms our efforts. We crossed the 50-million tonnes mark for the first time in 2017, and sales in the first half of 2018 have held steady compared to the same period last year, totalling a little above 25 million tonnes.

Mandatory Use of MFM for Delivery of Distillates from 1 July 2019

6.     Building on the success of MFM for MFO deliveries, MPA will extend the mandatory use of MFM to distillates from 1 July next year. MPA has started the validation of the performance of MFM systems on distillates bunker tankers, and expect to complete all approvals in time for the new rule.

Pilot for Electronic Bunker Delivery Note

7.     MPA has also recently completed preliminary tests on the use of electronic bunker delivery note, or e-BDN, and will launch an e-BDN pilot in the coming months. I encourage you to participate in the pilot, which will enable more efficient transactions between bunker buyers and sellers.

Drive Adoption of Cleaner Fuels with Industry and International Partners

8.     Even as we continue to strive for more efficient bunker transactions, we are also developing new capabilities that will encourage the use of cleaner marine fuels.

Singapore Ready for IMO’s 0.5% Global Sulphur Limit in 2020

9.     First, MPA is working closely with the industry to ensure that Singapore is ready to supply low-sulphur compliant fuels ahead of 1 January 2020, when the International Maritime Organization’s (IMO) 0.5% global sulphur limit takes effect. I thank you for your support in this critical endeavour. MPA will make available the list of licensed bunker suppliers of low-sulphur fuels in Singapore by mid-2019.

Singapore to be LNG Bunkering-Ready

10.    Second, MPA has made good progress on LNG bunkering in Singapore over the last few years. To kick-start the use of LNG as a marine fuel, MPA has co-funded the construction of eight LNG-fuelled vessels. The first two were delivered this year to Keppel SMIT Towage and Maju Maritime, which have since conducted a total of 15 LNG bunkering operations. We expect this number to grow as more LNG-fuelled vessels are delivered.

11.    Outside of Singapore, MPA continues to work closely with ten other like-minded ports through the LNG Bunkering Port Focus Group. I am glad to note that the focus group will be releasing a joint timeline today, showing the readiness of each port to provide LNG bunkering facilities.

12.    I am also happy to welcome to the focus group our first Middle Eastern partner – Suez Canal Economic Zone Authority. The growing membership will strengthen the global network of LNG bunkering facilities and give shipping lines more confidence to invest in LNG-fuelled vessels.

Supporting R&D in Other Alternative Fuels

13.    Third, to support the local bunker industry’s efforts in developing innovative marine fuel solutions, MPA has allocated $5 million under the Green Energy Programme to support the development and use of cleaner alternative marine fuels such as biofuels and methanol. Companies can tap on the fund to conduct research and development in alternative fuels to meet future greenhouse gas emissions regulations.

Co-create the Future of Bunker Industry

14.    With the impending global sulphur limit and the IMO’s commitment to halve carbon emissions by 2050, the bunker industry in Singapore is at an inflexion point. If we are able to overcome these challenges, I am confident that we will be able to take the industry to greater heights. We therefore have to come together to chart the way forward in an operating environment enabled by digitalisation, automation and the internet of things. In this regard, I am pleased to announce that MPA and its industry partners will co-create a 2030 roadmap for the Singapore bunker industry. The roadmap will be a beacon as the industry navigates ahead and plans for future growth.

Conclusion

15.    On this note, I wish everyone fruitful discussions. Thank you.