Falling Oil Spurring Demand for VLCC Floating Storage

Wednesday December 17, 2014

The continued falling price of oil has been a positive turn for tanker markets, which will see a sharp rise in demand for floating storage as buyers take advantage of crashing prices to stockpile supply, reports Reuters. 

"We see a clear increase in demand, especially from the East, and the oil is also carried over longer distances," said Herbjorn Hansson, chairman and CEO of Nordic American Tankers

"There are very few idle ships out there now and the market is much tighter."

Very large crude carrier (VLCC) rates are reportedly almost at five-year highs, and low prices have also had some part in battling the ship overcapacity that has plagued the industry in recent times.

Previously, floating storage wasn't as popular of an option, as ships deteriorate when kept at standstill. 

However, "once we have gone into 2015, there may come a point when the rapid build-up of surplus crude in the market will open opportunities for floating storage," said tanker broker E.A. Gibson.

"This scenario is a further positive for VLCCs," he added, especially if there is no more fleet growth into the next year. 

It was reported earlier this year that 2016 crude tanker growth had reached an "uncomfortable" four-year high, as a handful of new orders increased the capacity for crude oil tanker deliveries in by 16 percent.