Independent common carrier X-Press Feeders has conducted the first simultaneous methanol bunkering and cargo operation (SIMOPS) in the Port of Singapore during the maiden voyage of its new dual-fuel vessel. 

X-Press’s new vessel, one of 14 ordered by the carrier, received almost 300 metric tonnes of bio-methanol from Global Energy Trading in the middle of its debut journey from Shanghai, China to Rotterdam, the Netherlands. 

Francis Goh, X-Press COO, said: “This milestone represents a significant leap forward for X-Press Feeders and the global maritime industry. 

“We are proud to lead the way in developing and implementing innovative solutions that will drastically reduce the maritime shipping industry’s environmental footprint.” 

The refuelling was conducted in partnership with the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and PSA Singapore using the MT Kara bunker tanker operated by Stellar Shipmanagement Services. 

The milestone operation continues MPA’s work to provide methanol refuelling infrastructure at the Port of Singapore’s new Tuas Port after the ship-to-containership methanol bunkering for the Laura Maersk in July 2023 and the ship-to-ship bunkering of blended methanol for the Stena Prosperous last week. 

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Teo Eng Dih, CEO of MPA, said: “The successful execution of the SIMOPS is the outcome of many months of preparation for tripartite stakeholders to plan, prepare, and train to ensure the safety of the crew, port and vessel, while maintaining a high level of efficiency. 

“The learnings gained from these operations will help to further refine the various SOPs and safety measures.” 

In 2023, MPA launched an expression of interest for the supply of methanol as a marine fuel and has received 50 submissions from 60 companies, the port operator is also set to launch a call for license applications to supply methanol blends by the end of the year. 

Meanwhile, Singapore-based X-Press has been partnering with ports along its planned feeder routes for the new green methanol-capable vessels to ensure the development of a zero emissions fuel supply chain. 

The company will launch two routes powered by green methanol in Q3 2024, operating from Rotterdam to Antwerp Bruges, Klaipeda, and Riga as well as from Rotterdam to Antwerp Bruges, Helsinki, Tallinn, and HaminaKota.