Top bunker hub Singapore marine fuel sales hit record high in 2023

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Marine fuel sales at world’s leading bunkering hub in Singapore hit a record high last year, official data showed on Friday, driven by record container throughput and increased interest in biofuels.

Bunker sales, including volumes of bio-blended fuels and liquefied natural gas (LNG), rose to 51.82 million metric tons, data from Singapore’s Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) showed.

That surpassed a previous high of 50.64 million tons in 2017.

Volumes in December were the highest of any month last year at 5.05 million tons.

Container throughput rose to a record 39.01 million 20-foot equivalent units (TEUs), topping 2021’s previous record of 37.6 million.

A total of 591.70 million tons of cargo were handled in 2023, up from 578.22 million in 2022.

Vessel arrival tonnage topped 3 billion gross tonnage (GT) for the first time.

HIGH-SULPHUR MARKET SHARE EXPANDS

The market share of high-sulphur fuel oil (HSFO) for bunkering rose from 29% in 2022 to 32% in 2023 as more scrubber-installed vessels came online.

Total HSFO sales were up 19.5% from 2022 at 16.72 million tons in 2023, Reuters calculations based on MPA data showed.

In contrast, the market share of low-sulphur fuel oil (LSFO) contracted from 63% in 2022 to 59%. LSFO sales were up 2.4% year-on-year at 30.70 million tons in 2023.

Total marine gasoil (MGO) sales rose by 0.5% to 3.77 million tons in 2022.

BIOFUEL BUNKER SALES MORE THAN TRIPLE

Bunker sales of biofuel blends reached 520,000 tons in 2023 versus 140,000 tons in 2022, the MPA said.

Bio-bunker sales far surpassed liquefied natural gas (LNG) sales, which totalled 110,000 tons in 2023, though LNG volumes firmed more than six times compared with 16,000 tons in 2022.

More shippers have conducted refuelling trials using biofuels and LNG as cleaner alternatives to conventional marine fuels.

Source: Reuters