The Middle East Bunkering Convention Programme
NO TURNING BACK: ADAPTING TO COMMERCIAL AND REGULATORY CHANGES
6-7 February 2024 - Hilton Dubai Jumeirah Beach Hotel
Early Bird Rate: £450 (Save £200) Early Bird Ends 16 November 2023.
Standard Rate: £650
Programme details are updated regularly and are subject to change as new speakers are confirmed and themes developed.
If you feel you could make a significant contribution to the programme, please email Lesley Bankes-Hughes at email@example.com or call +44 1295 814455 to discuss this further.
TUESDAY 6 FEBRUARY
Conference Registration & Exhibition Opens
Cem Saral, CEO, Cockett Group
SESSION ONE: The view from here: The commercial outlook for shipping and bunkering
As geopolitical headwinds continue to impact the shipping industry, speakers in this opening session will consider how vessel trading patterns are being adapted in response to the current volatile economic climate, on a global scale and regionally. Is ‘deglobalisation’ set to become a future trend and how might this affect various vessel segments and bunkering.
Speakers will examine the current commercial pressures on bunker companies, including fuel prices, the availability of credit, bunker licensing, and fuel quality challenges. As margins have narrowed over the past year, this session will consider whether more industry consolidation is on the horizon. Are bunker companies having to become ‘leaner and fitter’ to stay ahead and how are they approaching issues such as staff recruitment and retention.
Tracy Wardell, Global Technical Manager, Intertek Lintec
Morning Coffee Break
SESSION TWO: Rules of engagement: The impact of sanctions and environmental regulations
In the light of the ongoing Ukraine crisis, speakers in this session will consider compliance with national sanctions regimes and discuss whether stringent counterparty risk assessments and more rigorous due diligence processes are now a fact of life for all companies who operate in the marine fuels value chain – or is there more work to be done. ESG reporting obligations for all marine fuel and shipping stakeholders will also be examined.
The impact of CII and EEXI will be reviewed a year on since their implementation by the International Maritime Organization (IMO), as well as the new ambitions in the IMO’s revised greenhouse gas strategy agreed in mid-2023.
New European regulations, such as FuelEU Maritime and the inclusion of shipping in the EU’s emissions trading system (ETS) which will impact all vessels that call at European ports, will come into play in 2024. MEBC will consider the possible ramifications of such regulations on shipping and bunkering companies, and also discuss the possibility that new environmental regulations and other market-based measures, such as a carbon levy, could also be introduced in other regions and on a global basis. Speakers will also consider how the cost of compliance with new environmental rules will add to credit pressures.
Mark Lakin, Partner, Stephenson Harwood Middle East LLP
SESSION THREE: Regional focus: the outlook for shipping, bunker supply and ports in the Middle East
The focus of this session is on the bunker markets in the Middle East and neighbouring regions, such as Egypt. Speakers will look at shipping segments, cargo flows, refining capacity, fuel availability and pricing, existing and new entrants to the bunker sector, and market opportunities and challenges.
The session will also consider the expansion plans of the region’s ports, their import and export flows, and the provision of new bunkering infrastructure.
Speaker TBC, Oilmar
Speaker TBC, Sohar Port & Freezone
Sean Burgin, Head of New Fuels, Senior Sourcer, Glander International Bunkering
Colin Holloway, Global Head – Technical, Cockett Group
Networking Coffee Break
SESSION FOUR: Re-energising the fuel supply chain: Shipping’s decarbonisation pathways
MEBC will discuss how the marine fuels sector is preparing for a multi-fuel future and, as the ‘first mover’ shipping companies set out their alternative fuel strategies, speakers will also consider how mid-sized and small companies are assessing their fuel and fleet renewal strategies.
COP28, to be held in Dubai in late 2023, will be a barometer for the world’s progress towards net or absolute zero, and MEBC24 will provide a platform for debate on the outcomes of this crucial meeting as they relate to shipping.
The Middle East is fast becoming a key producer of new, low carbon energy sources and MEBC speakers will look at how this is impacting on shipping, bunker supply, and the region’s ports, as well as the potential for green shipping corridors.
As new fuels enter the bunker supply chain, this year’s conference will also ask how marine fuel physical suppliers and traders are planning to adapt to what will be both a new commercial and operational environment.
17:00 - 19:00
WEDNESDAY 7 FEBRUARY
SESSION FIVE: Information exchange: Digitalisation, bunker deliveries – and getting what you pay for
This session will look at the options for improving vessel efficiency and how harnessing the power of data can streamline operational and commercial processes and deliver financial benefits for industry stakeholders.
As the ports of Rotterdam and Antwerp-Bruges prepare to make the use of mass flow meters mandatory, MEBC will ask if the time is right for the wider of adoption of MFMs in other global ports, including in the UAE and the wider Middle East region. Delegates will also hear about the impact of digitalisation on bunker purchasing, bunker deliveries and supply documentation.
Networking Coffee Break
SESSION SIX: Leadership Panel: There’s no turning back – so how do we go forward?
MEBC24 will conclude with its always popular Leadership Panel. Key industry experts will review the themes and discussions that have emerged over the course of conference and will each give their own perspectives on the ‘state of play’ in the marine fuels industry, its immediate and longer-term pressures and challenges, the increasingly onerous regulatory burden, the outlook for traditional bunker fuels, and the advent of new energy sources for shipping.
Capt. Rahul Choudhuri, President, Strategic Partnerships, VPS
Close of Middle East Bunkering Convention 2024