Contaminated fuel warning in Singapore

Not only are bunker prices at record highs in Singapore, the world’s largest bunkering hub, the quality of fuel on offer has come in for heavy criticism of late.

Splash has been alerted to multiple off spec bunker deliveries over the past four weeks. Japan’s largest shipowner by dwt, Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL), for instance, has been the victim of three consecutive poor quality bunker deliveries in Singapore in recent weeks, one of which knocked out the power for a number of days on a giant scrubber-fitted, HSFO-consuming valemax called Global Harmony.

It is not just HSFO that has had contaminants recorded recently. Splash has seen a note from Veritas Petroleum Services to clients warning of high sediment content in multiple fuel samples it has tested on VLSFO in Singapore recently.

The aluminium and silicon levels of these samples indicate that the fuels contain elevated levels of highly abrasive particles that could cause accelerated wear of diesel engine components, VPS warned.

Prices for HSFO stand at $722 per tonne and $1,038 per tonne in Singapore today, according to broker Bunkerama.

Sam Chambers

Starting out with the Informa Group in 2000 in Hong Kong, Sam Chambers became editor of Maritime Asia magazine as well as East Asia Editor for the world’s oldest newspaper, Lloyd’s List. In 2005 he pursued a freelance career and wrote for a variety of titles including taking on the role of Asia Editor at Seatrade magazine and China correspondent for Supply Chain Asia. His work has also appeared in The Economist, The New York Times, The Sunday Times and The International Herald Tribune.


  1. This is true. I experienced 2 really bad bunker supply in singapore recently. The fuel produces a sludge that wont flow through purifiers sludge port. And, if the bunkers gets colder it forms very thick sludge inside the piping and clogs the whole system. What is happening in singapore? Thinking those bunkers are supplied by giant energy companies.

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