Freight Rates To Fly High In Coming Years

Wednesday, April 25, 2001
The U.S. will become more dependent on tanker-borne petroleum imports in coming years, coinciding with a ship shortage which will push freight costs sharply higher, energy and tanker analysts said on Wednesday. "Products imports are playing a bigger swing role in the U.S. than ever before," Paul Horsnell of Oxford Institute of Energy Studies said. "They're becoming a structural feature of the U.S. system."

Horsnell told members of the tanker owners' organization Intertanko, which met in Sydney this week, that each year was now expected to bring a fourth quarter surge in demand for fuel oil imports -- a trade usually served by Panamax 50,000 tonrs. U.S. demand for gasoline imports would surge each spring. Intertanko research head Erik Ranheim said U.S. products imports in January were the highest in 10 years.

He also forecast dramatic increases in demand for Aframax crude tankers (75,000-120,000 tons), many of which trade to the United States. But this year tanker supply is not expected to keep up with demand in these trades. A report this month by a leading tanker broker said the world fleet of smaller tankers in both crude and product trades would remain static in 2001 and in some sectors could even contract. "Continued tight supply is likely to make Aframax tankers the over-performers of 2001," said London broker SS&Y. This is likely to be mirrored in the Panamax sector, where an "acute shortage" of modern ships will force up rates, SS&Y said.

Last year, Aframax freight rates hit their highest levels in 30 years, doubling or even tripling over the course of the year in most markets. The biggest gain was seen in the Caribbean, where rates nearly quadrupled between January and the year's high point in November of $2.30 per barrel for up-coast cargoes. Horsnell said the United States was increasingly obliged to import petroleum products because of under investment in the U.S. downstream industry. "The system lacks profitability in all aspects," he said.

Horsnell said the problem was illustrated when fog closed the Houston ship channel for several days in March, seriously affecting product stocks. "That's symptomatic of a system where all the flexibility has been depreciated. It hangs together, and they make it work, but there's no flexibility," he said. - (Reuters)

Maritime Today

The Maritime Industry's original and most viewed E-News Service

Maritime Reporter November 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds


SSA Welcomes Decision To Extend BEO

The Singapore Shipping Association (SSA) has welcomed the decision by Singapore’s Minister for Trade and Industry to extend the Competition (Block Exemption

Controversial Nicaragua Canal Project Postponed

China's Hong Kong Nicaragua Development (HKND) Co. said it is delaying the start of construction on a controversial $50 billion inter-ocean canal across Nicaragua until late 2016.

Dan-Bunkering Appoints Bara as Bunker Trader

Dan-Bunkering (Middle East) DMCC is pleased to announce that Lamin Bara has joined the office in Dubai as Bunker Trader as per 1 November 2015. Lamin was

Tanker Trends

Idling Fleet Continues to Surge

Owners are rapidly laying up containerships as the market slows. The size of the idle fleet will get bigger while rates and profits slide, says Drewry Shipping Consultants Limited.

Egypt to Complete East Port Said Side Channel in 2016

Egypt plans to complete a side channel in East Port Said, near the Suez Canal, that would speed up shipping and allow ships direct entry into the port by the end of June 2016,

Concordia Maritime Charters MR Tanker

Concordia Maritime has signed a contract for the charter of an IMO2/3 class MR tanker, the company announced today. The vessel will be chartered jointly with Stena Weco,

Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Navigation Offshore Oil Pipelines Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.0666 sec (15 req/sec)