July 02, 2009 (LBO) – Lanka Maritime Services, a Sri Lankan supplier of ship fuel, said it has acquired an 8,800 DWT double-hull tanker to supply bunkers to ships calling at Colombo port. “This was to avoid loss of foreign exchange by way of payment of demurrage on chartered vessels and also reduce expenses in order to make the price of bunkering in Colombo competitive.”
Bunker supply in Colombo port became more competitive after the Supreme Court last year ended an effective monopoly held by Lanka Marine Services, a unit of John Keells Holdings. The tanker will support the firm’s present fleet of bunker barges operating in the port and help increase sales, company officials said.
The company decided to expand its floating storage after facing problems in berthing its tankers at the port’s bunkering terminal.
“In order to increase the throughput and volume it is necessary for us to have our own vessel to transport our commodity,” Lanka Maritime Services director Mohamed Reza said in a statement.
“Further, due to the bottle-necks and uncertainty of berth availability to unload in the port of Colombo at the oil bank where there is only a single berth, it did become increa