Asia to Drive LNG Bunker Adoption

by Ship & Bunker News Team
Tuesday January 21, 2014

More than 3,000 liquefied natural gas (LNG)-powered vessels are set to be commissioned over the next 12 years, pushing the number of such ships in the global fleet up 37-fold, according to a report produced for the LNG Bunkering Summit 2014 that will be held January 27-29 in Amsterdam.

The report estimates that global sales of bunker fuels were more than 350 million tonnes in 2013, with 17 percent of that volume sold in Singapore.

Despite Europe's head start in developing the infrastructure for LNG bunkering, the report predicts that Asia will ultimately drive the biggest growth in the fuel's use.

The Singapore Maritime and Port Authority (MPA)'s commissioning of an LNG terminal at Jurong Island, along with a memorandum of understanding the authority signed with the Belgian ports of Antwerp and Zeeburgge, demonstrate the port's active interest in the fuel.

The report suggests Singapore's adoption of the fuel will be driven partly by competition with other major bunkering ports, Rotterdam and Fujairah, which are also developing LNG bunkering infrastructure.

China's increasing share of the global fleet will also make it an important player in the LNG bunkering landscape, with Chinese companies commissioning 30 new dual-fuel vessels since 2010 and building LNG refuelling stations on the Yangtze River.

Overall, the report predicts the use of LNG bunkers will rise at a 6 percent annual rate through 2025, increasing usage by 72 million tonnes.

Singapore took a step toward LNG bunkering in November with the completion of a study on the use of the fuel.