“Newbuilding prices are looking attractive at the moment but we are very concerned about the fleet growth outlook,” Sejling told Seatrade Global.
The present overhang of tanker tonnage has held back Maersk Tankers' decision in expanding its fleet, be it from placing new orders or from the secondhand market. “We are looking at options to develop our product tanker fleet but we have not made any decisions yet,” he said.
Sejling believed that it would not be commercially sensible to add more tonnage into the market, but Maersk Tankers would eventually need to embark on a fleet expansion or renewal programme to ensure its fleet can remain modernised.
He added that the fleet growth of MRs over the next few years will be “dramatic” as global demand will still be at insufficient levels to adequately absorb the excess tonnage.
Demand growth for MR tankers has averaged at 7% annually between 2002 to 2009 before tapering to about 3% this year. The supply side, on the other hand, saw 226 MRs on order, or 20% of the global fleet.
Maersk Tankers owns and operates a fleet of 224 tankers including VLCCs, product tankers, intermediate tankers and MRs.
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