Singapore launches commercial methanol bunkering

  • Spanish Market: Hydrogen, Oil products, Petrochemicals
  • 28/05/24

Singapore has launched commercial-scale methanol bunkering at the Tuas port, after a successful run of its first simultaneous methanol bunkering and cargo operation (Simops) on 27 May.

Bunkering operations for shore-to-ship, ship-to-ship, and simultaneous cargo operations while bunkering methanol or alternative fuels like ammonia and hydrogen, will now be available at the Port of Singapore, the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) announced.

This development comes after MPA's inaugural Simops of Singapore-based shipping firm X-Press Feeders' first dual-fuel engine container vessel. The Rotterdam-bound vessel was refuelled in Singapore with close to 300t of bio-methanol by MPA-licensed bunker supplier Global Energy Trading. The methanol bunkering occurred concurrently while vessel containers were restowed and loaded, and was supported by digitalisation of the bunkering process for near real-time visibility for various stakeholders.

All crew members were trained to handle methanol as a marine fuel and respond to emergencies, given that safety remains a key consideration when bunkering alternative fuels.

X-Press Feeders' vessel was the first of 14 dual-fuel vessels that it has ordered. The China-built vessel is equipped with a German-designed dual-fuel engine and has the flexibility to operate on green methanol. The firm plans to operate its green methanol-powered feeders mostly in the ports of Rotterdam and Antwerp-Bruges, where it has a fuel supply contract with chemical manufacturing firm OCI Global.

"We look forward to working with other like-minded partners, including on the use of digital bunkering and mass flow meter solutions, to operationalise the delivery of the new marine fuels in Singapore," MPA chief executive Teo Eng Dih said.

Singapore is steadily advancing towards its multi-fuel transition for maritime decarbonisation. Another ship-to-ship delivery of 1,340t of blended 20pc bio-methanol combined with 80pc of conventional methanol was completed on 24 May. The alternative fuel blend is reported to provide 31pc in CO2 equivalent savings on a tank-to-wake basis as compared to operating on conventional very-low sulphur fuel oil (VLSFO) for the same distance.

The Argus-assessed price for VLSFO stood at $582.68/t delivered on board (dob) Singapore on 27 May, while prices for B24 were assessed at $720.50/t dob Singapore.


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14/06/24

Venezuela to require appointments at some gas stations

Venezuela to require appointments at some gas stations

Caracas, 14 June (Argus) — Venezuelan drivers will need to schedule appointments in order to purchase gasoline from retail outlets selling government subsidized fuel, oil minister Pedro Tellechea told Argus on Friday. The subsidized gasoline is still inexpensive, at 2¢/liter, and plentiful, Tellechea said, despite drivers often waiting in line for hours for the fuel. But under a plan to modernize the stations selling the subsidized gas with new pumps and flat screen monitors, an appointment system will soon be required for purchases. Venezuela raised gasoline prices to 50¢/liter in 2020, to what the government has called a "international price," but then set aside stations meant just for members of the ruling party and other groups, where they could buy gasoline for much less. Today about 60pc of the country's 1,800 retail gas stations sell at unsubsidized prices. Half of Venezuela's gas stations will be refurbished this year, with pumps that can fill up an SUV in 20 seconds, supply 700 vehicles a day, and accept all forms of payment, Tellechea told reporters at a model station in Altamira, east Caracas, on Friday. "There aren't in South America gas stations right now just like the ones you are seeing today," he said. "Drivers won't have to wait in line at subsidized stations, they will have their appointments programmed to the second." Tellechea said Venezuelans are now using 95,000 b/d of gasoline but he declined to say how much is being produced domestically. Tallecha said oil production was growing, reaching "above 950,000 b/d" on Friday, but that included about 40,000 b/d of condensates and natural gas liquids. By Carlos Camacho Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Q&A: Phillips 66 to balance fossil and renewable fuels


14/06/24
14/06/24

Q&A: Phillips 66 to balance fossil and renewable fuels

Houston, 14 June (Argus) — With Phillips 66's Rodeo, California, refinery expected to ramp up to over 50,000 b/d of renewable fuels production by the end of this quarter, all eyes are on the refiner for what is next. Zhanna Golodryga , executive vice president of emerging energy and sustainability for Phillips 66, talked to Argus at the refiner's Houston headquarters about how the company looks at investments, its focus on sustainable aviation fuel (SAF) production and why Texas might be the Silicon Valley of the energy transition. The conversation has been edited for clarity and length. When Rodeo reaches full capacity, it will represent about 3pc of your overall output. What will your fleet look like longer-term and what will be the renewables/petroleum split? Not all the refineries in our portfolio are created equal, and when we look at them what I call them is "lower-carbon energy hubs". Not low, lower, because it's going to be a combination of everything. We're looking at the assets we have in the portfolio and what we can do to help bring in lower carbon solutions and what can we build out. Our focus is going to continue to be SAF. We understand the limitations of feedstocks and we have a very strong commercial organization that is now working on providing feedstocks just for Rodeo. But we're also thinking about what we can do to bring in different feedstocks. Energy transition opportunities aren't going to replace our traditional fossil fuel refining. It's an "and", not an "or". You've highlighted a future focus on SAF. Does that mean a move away from renewable diesel (RD)? I think we have flexibility to do both and it will be market driven going forward. We have to look at demand but there is demand for SAF globally, not just in the US. Demand for gasoline is not as strong as demand for diesel and sustainable aviation fuel. That is what our focus is and then we want to diversify the feedstock. What is your outlook for RD? I think RD is here for quite some time. It's hard to predict what's going to happen by 2050 but I think we will have the demand. It's going to take a long time to electrify all future transportation. I think we have a much better opportunity for now to focus on what we're really good at. That's fuels, renewable fuels. You have faced activist investor pressure calling for Phillips 66 to focus on its core refining business. How do investors feel about the Rodeo conversion and your future plans? We have taken a pragmatic approach to the energy transition. We have criteria that we follow prior to taking any projects over the line, specifically the energy transition type projects. They must meet five key prerequisites: the right returns, the right technology that has been proven at scale, the right regulatory environment, preferably involve a partnership and be done at the right time. We have to prove with Rodeo that this is, as I call it, our license to continue to grow the business. This is our license to operate additional energy transition business. This one is going to be done extremely well. What are the policy tailwinds and headwinds to your renewables investments? When we look at our opportunities in our energy transition portfolio, we are building our economic model for them to produce the right returns without any incentives. That is our starting point. On the other hand, the IRA [US Inflation Reduction Act] has been a bipartisan initiative and we think it's going to stand for the greater good of the planet. We have to think globally, as we have the Humber refinery in the UK. It's interesting for us to see what's possible in the US with the IRA incentives, versus more of a stick in Europe. But the challenge for us is permitting and timing. We probably could have brought Rodeo online sooner if we didn't have to wait for some permits. Our headquarters are in Texas and Texas is the "energy transition Silicon Valley". I'm repeating someone's words and those are the words of Bill Gates. But I believe that. We're perfectly positioned on the Gulf coast to go to the next phase and build something here. You've mentioned Phillips 66's 265,000 b/d Sweeny refinery in Old Ocean, Texas, as a low carbon energy hub. Does that mean it is a candidate for renewable fuel conversion or co-processing? It could be an option, maybe not at Sweeny, but in the Gulf coast, maybe Lake Charles. It's driven by our hardware, just like what we've done at Rodeo. By Nathan Risser Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

S Africa's ANC, DA agree to form government


14/06/24
14/06/24

S Africa's ANC, DA agree to form government

Cape Town, 14 June (Argus) — South Africa's African National Congress (ANC) and Democratic Alliance (DA) political parties today agreed to form a government while the first sitting of the new parliament was underway. The agreement, which includes the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP), paves the way for ANC leader Cyril Ramaphosa to be re-elected president. The parties will assume various positions in government broadly in proportion to their share of seats. The government of national unity (GNU) agreement is the result of two weeks of intense negotiations after the ANC lost its long-held majority in the national election on 29 May. It secured 40.2pc of the vote, and the centre-right, pro-market DA retained its position as the official opposition with 21.8pc. The deal scuppers the possibility of an alliance between the ANC and the two largest left-wing parties, MK (uMkhonto weSizwe) and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), which credit ratings agency Fitch warned could pose risks to macroeconomic stability . MK party unseated the EFF in the election to come third, winning 14.6pc of the vote. The EFF secured 9.5pc, and the IFP came a distant fifth with 3.85pc. The MK and EFF are populist parties that campaigned on agendas including wide-scale land expropriation without compensation, nationalisation of economic assets — including mines, the central bank and large banks and insurers — halting fiscal consolidation and aggressively increasing social grants. The GNU parties agreed the new administration should focus on rapid economic growth, job creation, infrastructure development and fiscal sustainability. Other priorities include building a professional, merit-based and non-partisan public service, as well as strengthening law enforcement agencies to address crime and corruption. Through a national dialogue that will include civil society, labour and business, parties will seek to develop a national social compact to enable South Africa to meet its developmental goals, they said. The GNU will take decisions in accordance with the established practice of consensus, but where no consensus is possible a principle of sufficient consensus will apply. By Elaine Mills Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

India implements e-PVC anti-dumping duties


14/06/24
14/06/24

India implements e-PVC anti-dumping duties

Singapore, 14 June (Argus) — India's central government has imposed additional anti-dumping duties (ADDs) on imports of paste polyvinyl chloride (e-PVC) from China, South Korea, Malaysia, Norway, Taiwan, and Thailand from 13 June. The implementation comes after Indian authorities concluded investigations on 26 April which found that imports were purchased at dumped prices from these countries. Authorities also noted there was a substantial increase in imports from these countries and concluded that the domestic industry was affected negatively because of this. But the authorities also incorporated exclusions to the ADDs. These were on PVC resins with a K-value below 60K, PVC blending resins, co-polymers of PVC paste resin, battery separator resins and the brand name "Biovyn" produced by European PVC producer Innovyn. The announcement of the ADDs comes at a time when regional freight challenges have been a significant concern for Indian importers. Limited container availability has resulted in South Korean producers Hanwha Solutions and LG Chem postponing shipments of cargoes that were purchased by Indian buyers for arrival in June and early July. The producers sent letters to their customers informing them of the freight challenges. Both producers indicated a raise in prices for shipments, with LG Chem indicating a rise in PVC prices by $100/t. Key Taiwanese PVC producer Formosa was forced to postpone the announcement of its offers for July shipment from this week to next week because of shipping uncertainties, according to market participants. With the lack of imports, Indian producers this week raised domestic prices of suspension-PVC (s-PVC) by 4,000 rupees/t ($48/t) and e-PVC by Rs5,000/t. Offers of Chinese-origin cargoes have been limited, with some s-PVC offers at $930-950/t this week. Chinese producers are trying to circumvent freight difficulties by shipping PVC cargoes in jumbo bags in bulk vessels instead of containers. But acceptance by Indian buyers has been underwhelming, according to market participants. The ADDs will be enforced for a period of six months from 13 June and are payable in Indian rupees. By Matthew Rajendra India e-PVC ADD list $/t Country of Origin Country of export Producer Duty China Any Formosa Industries (Ningbo) Co., Ltd. 546 China Any Shenyang Chemical Co. Ltd 115 China Any Other Chinese producers except above 600 Any China Any 600 South Korea Any Hanwha Solutions Corporation 0 South Korea Any Other South Korean producers 41 Any South Koreaa Any 41 Malaysia Any Kaneka Paste Sdn. Bhd. 317 Malaysia Any Other Malaysian producers 375 Any Malaysia Any 375 Taiwan Any Formosa Plastics Corporation 118 Taiwan Any Other Taiwanese producers 168 Any Taiwan Any 168 Thailand Any TPC Paste Resin Co. Ltd. 195 Thailand Any Other Thai producers 252 Any Thailand Any 252 Norway Any Any 328 Any Norway Any 328 Data from India's Ministry of Finance Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Competing US farm bill drafts boost SAF


12/06/24
12/06/24

Competing US farm bill drafts boost SAF

New York, 12 June (Argus) — Republicans and Democrats say they still have work to do to negotiate a final agreement around this year's US farm bill, although proposals from both parties include provisions to boost production of sustainable aviation fuel (SAF). Senator John Boozman (R-Arkansas) released the latest proposal on Tuesday, which represents the view of the minority Republicans on the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry. The bill clarifies that SAF is an eligible technology under a federal program that offers loan guarantees for the construction and retrofitting of biorefineries. Similar language appeared in the Republican-backed farm bill draft that passed the House Committee on Agriculture last month and in Senate committee chair Debbie Stabenow's (D-Michigan) Democratic-backed farm bill framework. The Biorefinery, Renewable Chemical, and Biobased Product Manufacturing Assistance Program currently offers support to producers of "advanced biofuels," a category that does not explicitly include alternative jet fuels and specifically limits fuels derived from corn starch. A revised definition of "advanced biofuels" could also allow SAF to benefit from other US Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs, including one that pays companies to expand production of renewable fuels. Corn growers and ethanol producers, which could benefit from Inflation Reduction Act tax credits for low-carbon fuels, are among the groups calling for the farm bill to include such SAF provisions. The White House has set a 2030 goal for US SAF production to reach at least 3bn USG/yr (200,000 b/d), although the types of fuels that can qualify for federal support are still up in the air. Some environmentalists have backed restrictions around crop-based feedstocks while biofuel and airline groups support more flexibility. The similar SAF language in the three proposals is notable given rifts between Democrats and Republicans over other elements of the farm bill, a major five-year agriculture policy package set to expire after September this year. While a handful of Democrats crossed party lines to advance the House proposal out of committee, others have criticized it for cutting food assistance and removing "climate-smart" requirements included in the Inflation Reduction Act for USDA conservation programs. Stabenow said that key differences remain between her proposal and Republican bills but that she was looking forward to working with lawmakers to "finish our work by the end of the year." Full legislative text is not yet available for the Stabenow and Boozman proposals, and it is unclear when the Senate committee will mark up a final bill. By Cole Martin Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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