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Low-sulphur gas oil sales triple at Rotterdam

The Port of Rotterdam has reported a tripling in sales of low-sulphur gas oil in 2015, while sales of fuel oil have fallen.

Sales of low-sulphur gas oil and diesel hit 1.8m cu m from 0.7 cu m in 2014, while sales of fuel oil fell to 8.7m cu m from 9.8. Delivery of all ship fuels remained at its 2014 level of 10.6m cu m.

The news is a clear indication that many owners are adhering to the North Sea sulphur cap, which entered into force on 1 January 2015, despite industry fears that owners could not afford low sulphur fuels and would prefer to risk non-compliance fines.

“The Port of Rotterdam Authority welcomes this development, since gas oil and diesel are significantly less polluting than fuel oil,” the authority said in a statement.

The largest bunkering port in Europe, Rotterdam hopes the news is an indication of a strong future uptake in LNG, when bunkering capability comes on-stream in 2017.

“The Port Authority is committed to cleaner shipping, and shows this by investing in Rotterdam as LNG hub and stimulating the transition from fuel oil to LNG as a fuel for shipping,” the statement continued. “The Port Authority expects that in 2017, the first sea-going vessel will be able to bunker LNG in Rotterdam from the water via a bunkering vessel.”

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