VLCC market news for week ending Aug 16By james tweed • Aug 17th, 2013 • Category: Tankers
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This week, charterers have shown their dominance of the AG VLCC market. By 9am on Monday morning, shipowners’ favourite Korean charterers threw down the gauntlet and quoted the market for 27-29/August laydays. They soon had seven offers and despite owners attempting to resist, charterers managed to convince not just one, but two vessels to accept 274 at 31. These fixtures set the tone for the week; the weight of the tonnage list literally dragging rates to the bottom and only additional commissions and laytime allow any upward movement from this point. Even charterers looking for multiple discharge options are finding ships willing all options with only a minimal premium.
Given the depressed state of the AG, West Africa has also been soft with charterers holding most of the cards. The higher level of the Suezmax market has meant that some charterers managed to parcel up and fix VLCCs. The prevailing market rates for West Africa/East are 260 at 35 and to the UKC-Med 45. It is difficult to see rates moving significantly. The Indian charterers were quiet out of West Africa after covering their first decade September requirements last week. Following a lack of activity in the East, the tonnage list is very long and once charterers come into the market for their last decade requirements out of the
region next week, rates will come under pressure from the eastern ballasters.
The 30 day availability index shows 79 VLCCs arriving at Fujairah, of which 11 are single hull, compared to 74 last month. So far for the month of August, we have counted a total of 115 fixtures, so there are not many fixtures left for the month but there is a hangover of about 25 vessels into the month of September. The bunker price is $605/tonne, down $10/tonne from last week.
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