Captain Ashok Sabnis, founder and managing director of Singapore’s Goodwood Ship Management looks at the tanker trades next year, as well as calling on the local authorities to be careful with its immigration rules.
2015 has been one of improvement for the tanker sector, which is in contrast to the rest of the shipping industry. There has been no one single event which has shaped the year in the tanker market, more of a series of developments which combined, made it a good year overall.
We believe the demand-supply equation in shipping is still a concern and there are probably too many tankers being ordered, but as of now the tanker sector is positive, freight rates are strong and tanker operators are having reasonably good times. This is all good for tanker managers.
2016 will be a year of caution. Although the low oil price does not directly have an impact on the tanker management sector, a falling oil price could have negative knock on effect in our markets and in the world economy in general. As a shipmanager we shall continue to grow with prudence and caution.
We are currently managing 34 vessels, with induction of another six VLCCs and other projects in hand. By the end of 2016, we are expecting to manage about 45 vessels.
On local issues I hope the Singapore government will continue to exercise a liberal and open outlook towards the hiring of foreign talent. This is an issue in Singapore, which concerns many in our sector so we hope and believe that sense will prevail.