This would be the first reported STS shipment loaded onto the Oceania megatanker since it arrived off Malta, Reuters reported, citing information from oil analytics company Vortexa.

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Euronav stated that the use of the ULCC is just one of its IMO 2020 initiatives, which aim to give emphasis on the quality and quantity of compliant fuel supply.

The company is among those that oppose to the use of scrubbers. Last October, it stated it has 3 areas of concern when considering scrubber installation on its fleet. These concern the capital investment, the risk of pollution and the implementation and enforcement regime.

It added that open-loop scrubbers (OLS) use seawater brought on board to remove sulphur from exhaust gases, but the wastewater produced has a toxic cocktail of sulphuric acid constituents, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and heavy metals which then enter into the open ocean, transferring pollution from air to sea.

In addition, traders report that they have seen Euronav actively purchasing fuel oil recently. This can be interpreted as a new trends in which shipowners are becoming more active in the trading arena, according to senior Vortexa trading specialist, Cosmo Kedros.

He also added that he expects to see more of this movement across Europe and Asia in the months leading to the IMO 2020 deadline.