IMO sulfur cap: Get ready now, official tells shipowners

Singapore to tighten controls in marine fuels supply chain
Illustrative picture. PHOTO CREDIT: SHIPS & PORTS archive

By Jite Eriabie

An official of the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has advised shipowners across the world to “get ready now” as there won’t be any postponement of the deadline for implementation of the 0.5% sulfur cap rule.

The sulfur cap rule will come into effect January 2020 as the New ISO standards for IMO 2020-compliant marine fuel are expected to be issued by International Organization for Standardization by the middle of 2019.

The ISO:8217 standards are used by the shipping industry when sourcing bunker fuel and cover a variety of parameters and specifications allowed in the fuel.

IMO’s Head of Air Pollution and Energy Efficiency, Edmund Hughes who made the disclosure at the Fujairah Bunkering and Fuel Oil Forum expressed optimism that the organisation’s supply outlook for 0.5% sulfur compliant marine fuel oil is accurate.

He said, “I’m pleased that some of the estimates we made are coming to fruition. A lot of that analysis was done on predicting the demand and looking at supply expansions in Asia, for example.”

He said regulating ships and ensuring a high level of compliance “will prove crucial to the sector”.