February 22, 2018 / 9:00 AM / 8 months ago

Vitol's Chris Bake sees IMO rules as cliffhanger for oil storage

LONDON, Feb 22 (Reuters) -

* Vitol executive committee member Chris Bake says big question facing oil storage sector is how world handles new International Maritime Organisation rules for cleaner shipping

* New IMO rules to slash the use of high sulphur fuel oil in global shipping will come into effect in 2020

* "It's going to be more and more difficult to burn that fuel oil with more economies going to natural gas for power," he said

* "(Lower sulphur) marine gasoil has to build ahead of 2020. At the same time fuel oil will have to build because there is lack of demand but it's difficult to figure out when that inflection point is," he said

* He added that the industry has missed the opportunity to install scrubbers on a wide scale

* Scrubbers, which reduce sulphur content of fuel on board ships, are seen as an alternative to buying more expensive, cleaner fuel (Reporting by Julia Payne; editing by Jason Neely)

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