Amid the industry’s hot debate on how to achieve compliance with the upcoming environmental regulations, and on how these rules are expected to affect companies financially, the world’s largest container ship company, Danish Maersk, said that the 2020 sulphur cap will add about USD2 billion to its annual fuel bill.
According to Simon Bergulf, director for regulatory affairs at A.P. Moller-Maersk A/S, as quoted by Bloomberg, high costs will be driven by a combination of high crude prices with the restricted availability of compliant fuels, as well as the research investments for compliance.
As explained, the company spent USD3.37 billion on fuel last year, but another 2 billion are expected to be additional to these expanses.
Entering into effect from 1 January 2020, the sulphur cap, mandated by IMO, requires that ships will run on fuel containing no more than 0,5% of sulphur, instead of the 3,5% which is currently into effect. As shipowners are seeking which is the best solution for compliance, the dilemma of investment on scrubbers or environmentally compliant fuel is at the centre of global discussions.
Maersk has earlier announced that it will pursue neither scrubbers nor LNG as an option for compliance with the IMO 2020 sulphur cap, but it will replace the cheaper bunker oil with fuels with a lower sulphur content.
Last week, the Danish giant announced the development of a 0.5% fuel-supply facility in Rotterdam with storage company Vopak that will cater for around 20% of Maersk’s global demand.