With the export of its first parcel of IMO 2020 grade Very Low Sulphur Fuel Oil (VLSFO) from Kochi to Singapore, Bharat Petroleum becomes the first oil marketing company to export this cleaner shipping fuel from the country.
M Beena, Chairman, Cochin Port Trust, flagged off the first export tanker of VLSFO from the Cochin Port in the presence of P Murali Madhavan, Executive Director (Kochi Refinery), and K Suresh Nair, Executive Director (Supply Chain Optimisation), BPCL.
Stringent IMO standards aimed at preventing pollution from marine and shipping operations are re-shaping the landscape of marine fuels and the global cap on sulphur content for general shipping stands reduced to 0.5 per cent from 3.5 per cent with effect from January 1.
VLSFO is an IMO 2020 compliant marine fuel and in view of the emerging market for VLSFO, Kochi Refinery started production from December 2019. “We also started supplying VLSFO to the tankers calling at Kochi from then on. VLSFO is produced mainly using the vacuum residue of low sulphur crude oils with suitable blending streams.
“Now that the global demand is increasing, we have entered into exports of VLSFO, after saturating indigenous demands. The first export that was flagged off today also marks the first export from the country by any oil marketing company in India,” said Murali Madhavan, Executive Director (Kochi Refinery).
The tanker MT Alnic MC carried the first parcel of 15 TMT VLSFO to Singapore.