Royal Dutch Shell plc and BP plc
, Europe’s largest energy companies, were the leading hirers of oil tankers last year as crude prices rose to records. Shell hired 762 crude oil tankers for single voyages in 2005, accounting for 7.5 percent of the global total, according to figures compiled by New York-based shipbroker Poten & Partners.
BP rose from fifth in 2004 to second, with a share of 4.9 percent. Exxon Mobil Corp, the world’s top energy company
, came third in the survey.
Oil producers and traders hire tankers to ship oil from producing regions to refineries around the world.
Shell and BP lease ships from owners including Front line Ltd and Teekay Shipping Co, the world’s largest oil tanker companies. The average cost of hiring a so-called very large crude carrier, able to carry two million barrels of oil, fell 39 percent last year to $59,206 according to Oslo-based P. F. Bassoe AS. (Source: Bloomberg)