Switching to lower-sulphur burning fuel to comply with emissions control areas’ new limits will boost transportation costs by $29-$49 per teu on transatlantic voyages, according to a report by Drewry Maritime Advisors.
The cost increase, due to the introduction of marine gas oil and other factors, will run to about $29 per teu for voyages between northern Europe and the US east coast.
For voyages that extend to the US Gulf coast, the cost will be about $20 more.
Marine gas oil is running about $300 higher per tonne than the price of heavy fuel oil.
Heavy fuel oil in Singapore was priced at $601 per tonne on Wednesday and the cost of marine fuel oil at the same location was $914 per tonne.
However, Drewry’s calculation projecting transatlantic trade costs included other factors, too, such as the time it takes to switch to marine gas oil at sea and fatigue to engines burning the lower-sulphur fuel.
Drewry advised containership companies to start examining the compliance cost of low-sulphur regulations for negotiating cost increases with shippers as the ECA deadlines roll out.
Earlier this year, Drewry estimated the added cost of using lower-sulphur fuels for compliance on Asia to Europe voyages could require bunker adjustment factors of 20%, implying a cost hike of $100-$120 per teu.