Strong support for the inaugural Middle East Bunkering Convention

on Tuesday, 29 March 2016. Posted in Petrospot News

The first Middle East Bunkering Convention (MEBC), held at the InterContinental Dubai Marina Hotel from 13-17 March and organised by Petrospot Ltd, brought together key players from the local bunker market as well as international experts to debate the challenges and opportunities facing the region’s fast-growing marine fuels sector.

This well-attended two-day conference, which will now become an annual event in the Middle East marine fuels calendar, was chaired by Robin Meech, who has just taken on the role of Chairman of the International Bunker Industry Association (IBIA).

Ahead of the conference, the Petrospot Academy held its popular three-day Oxford Bunker Course (Advanced) and a Bunker Dispute Resolution Workshop, while IBIA ran its Basic Bunker Course.

The conference was formally opened with a welcome address by Eng. Mohammad Al-Bastaki, Director of Maritime Operations of the Dubai Maritime City Authority.
The following sessions then looked at the wide range of issues and regulations facing the bunker industry today – in particular, the Middle East market – including the introduction of the 0.5% global sulphur cap in 2020 or 2025, the proposed revisions to the ISO 8217 fuel quality specification, the BIMCO standard bunker contract, as well as bunker quality and future fuel management challenges.

A key session featured a panel of maritime lawyers – representing the United Arab Emirates, the United Kingdom and the United States – who looked at the implications for local and global markets following the easing of Iranian sanctions. Other important legal coverage included a review of progress in the creation of an Emirates Maritime Arbitration Centre, expert reflections on the impact and repercussions of the disappearance of OW Bunker from the bunker industry, as well as the subject of vessel arrest in the Middle East.

Delegates were also given individual insights into the dynamics and growth potential of the hugely-important Fujairah bunker market as well as insights into the development potential of two regional markets, Oman and India.

The participants at MEBC also enjoyed an evening networking reception, kindly sponsored by the Dubai Maritime City Authority.

Llewellyn Bankes-Hughes, Managing Director of the event organiser, Petrospot Ltd, commented on the success of MEBC: ‘Petrospot has built its reputation on the delivery of high quality, industry-leading training courses and conferences, and the recent MEBC is a clear example of the company’s commitment to improving education and training and supporting high-level, expert discussion in the marine fuels industry.

‘We were delighted in the support given to the first MEBC by the local bunker industry and by their willingness to engage in genuinely meaningful, constructive and fruitful debate with delegates and speakers alike on the key issues impacting the marine fuels market.’

He concluded: ‘The feedback we have received following MEBC has been overwhelmingly positive, and we look forward to bringing another excellent programme to the Middle East in 2017.’