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Singapore awards first pair of LNG bunkering licences

PAVILION Gas and a joint bid by Keppel Offshore & Marine and BG Group emerged as the winners of Singapore's first LNG (liquefied natural gas) bunkering licences.

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore said the licences were awarded to two out of 12 submitted bids that best met the set criteria of a request for proposal, which closed on Sept 30.

MPA will work with the two licence holders to develop the necessary infrastructure for them to begin supplying LNG bunker to vessels in the Port of Singapore by early 2017.

Singapore is set to be among the first nations to embark on LNG bunkering. The use of the cleaner burning fossil fuel alternative is also among the options being explored by ports and vessel owners looking to comply with the International Maritime Organization's cap on sulphur emissions due to kick in by 2020.

MPA is also working with stakeholders to develop LNG bunkering standards and procedures at both the national and international levels.

The port authority has also signed memoranda of understanding with the Port of Rotterdam, Antwerp Port Authority and the Port of Zeebrugge to harmonise LNG bunkering standards and procedures.

In addition, MPA is funding up to S$12 million for the building of six LNG-fuelled vessels. To date, MPA has received a total of five applications which are being evaluated.

MPA expects to announce the successful applicants by March 2016. MPA will also be engaging towage service providers in Singapore to consider switching to LNG as a fuel when they commission new tug boats.