Abstract

Economic history over the last 300 years has shown that efficient transport methods and a choice of transport options stimulate economic growth and commercial opportunities.

Ship-to-ship (STS) transfer of bulk oils and gases is a well-established procedure worldwide. It offers the ability to optimise transport costs by the use of large tankers transhipping to and from smaller tankers, for delivery to or from end users or production facilities.

STS transfer at sea eliminates the need to use costly port infrastructure and transports oil and gas in a safe, efficient and cost effective way, although in port transfer can be done using existing facilities. The use of STS transfer should be considered when evaluating transportation options from new production facilities. It has a role to play in developing production from smaller or difficult to access fields.

STS transfer offers flexibility in trading and can create new trading as well as employment opportunities. Regional hub points for STS transfer can be established at strategic locations at minimal costs to meet trading needs. Strategically located STS transfer hubs can reduce voyage time, in turn saving bunker costs. As well as saving storage costs in oil distribution and storage centres for example Singapore.

As older, inefficient and environmentally challenged refineries close, the pace of change in trading patterns of oil and its products will accelerate and STS transfer will play a vital role.

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