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Two vessels detained for non-compliant fuel in Singapore port during Q1

Singapore, the world’s busiest port by shipping tonnage, has reported a high level of compliance with IMO 2020 regulation with just two vessels detained for using non-compliant fuel in the first quarter of the year.

The IMO 2020 regulation came into force on 1 January worldwide mandating that vessels use fuel with less than 0.5% sulphur content.

The Maritime & Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) said that 96% of vessels calling the port in Q1 this year used compliant fuel, this number excludes vessels using open loop scrubbers and have to switch to compliant fuels in Singapore waters.

In the first quarter of the year MPA said it conducted 326 Port State Control (PSC) and Flag State Control (FSC) inspections. Two international-registered vessels were detained following PSC inspections which found they were using non-compliant fuel. The vessels in question were only allowed to depart the Port of Singapore once they had switched to compliant fuel.

The authority found 12 ships in the period where the sulphur content of fuel marginally exceeded the 0.5% limit.

“This was likely due to remnant residues of high-sulphur fuel in the fuel oil tanks and piping. It is expected that in time, the fuel oil tanks and piping will be properly flushed with the continual use of compliant fuel. MPA had informed the respective managers and flag administrations of these ships about the non-compliance,” MPA said.

No vessels were found to be operating open-loop scrubbers, which are banned from operation in Singapore waters.