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Monday, October 15, 2018


INTERTANKO noted some reports in the media that Saudi Aramco is taking an increasingly tough stance regarding vessels aged 20 years or older and HBL vessels. We have checked this directly with Saudi Aramco, who have advised us the following:


In response to your letter dated June 22nd regarding the recent [press] article on tanker acceptance at Saudi Aramco terminals, this is to hopefully clarify the points of your enquiry. Saudi Aramco applies a tanker vetting system similar to that adopted by most of the oil majors. The objective of the vetting system is to ensure that our marine operations are conducted in the safest manner possible.Presently Saudi Aramco has NO specific restrictions on tankers 20 years or older. Nor is there bias against hydrostatically balanced loading. Our first concern is environmental protection and the security of life and property, a position we feel very strongly about. We appreciate your interest’.


Upon further enquiry, we have made some further enquiries and we understand that in practice, however, whilst Saudi Aramco do not utilise a CAP system, they will ‘look’ at a vessel’s CAP rating as part of their assessment system. Saudi Armco's shipping subsidiary Vela International Marine Limited has adopted a stringent policy of Condition Assessment Programme (CAP) ratings for all ships owned or third-party chartered that are 20 years old or older and of at least 16,500 deadweight tons. Such ships must meet minimum ratings for key operating systems and structural integrity, among other criteria. Further Vela will neither operate nor charter any vessel aged 25 years or older

Contact: Howard Snaith