Uncertainty still defines the IMO 2020 mandate for the adoption of low sulfur fuels by 2020. It’s a “chicken or the egg” scenario in which everyone waits for the other to make a move. With a choice between scrubbers or low sulfur fuel oil, ship owners wait for assurance in refiners’ ability to meet LSFO demands. Ship owners hope to determine if the installation of scrubbers using high sulfur fuel will be worth the extra installation costs or if LSFO will indeed be the best choice. Refiners say they are ready, but the shipping community still has their doubts about where the fuel will be available and if supply will meet the spike in demand.

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