Tankers are in demand, VesselsValue reports

July 28, 2022
Vessel prices have surged by as much as 60% amid Ukraine war disruptions.

Offshore staff

LONDON  As candidates for demolition begin to dry up ahead of the monsoon season, the YTD scrapping figures make a healthy reading, particularly in the tanker sector with 104 sales reported, according to VesselsValue. This bodes well for owners; tonnage oversupply has proved a troublesome obstacle for tanker earnings over the past 18 months, the market intelligence firm reported. 

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has supercharged the tanker segment of the shipping market, with soaring freight rates prompting companies to rush to purchase rather than rent vessels, according to a Bloomberg report. Trade curbs on Moscow have upended fuel flows, locking up more ships on long-haul routes, while others handle Russian shipments. That’s tightened tanker supply, lifting freight costs and setting off a scramble for used vessels, with the price of so-called clean tankers jumping as much as 60% this year, according to VesselsValue.

Tankers are in demand.

Vessels Sold by Year 

Year Rigs
Source: VesselsValue

Total Spent

Year Amount (US dollar)
2018$2 billion
2019$2 billion
2020$1 billion
2021$3 billion
2022$4 billion
Source: VesselsValue

Commodity markets, and the shipping trade that’s vital for transporting materials around the globe, have upended Europe’s worst military crisis since World War II, Bloomberg reported. While freight rates have recently eased from their highs, ship owners are still likely to fetch healthy earnings for the rest of the year, according to Anoop Singh, head of tanker research at Braemar ACM Shipbroking, in the report.

With demand outstripping availability, buyers have been willing to bid significantly higher, shipbrokers told Bloomberg. Given a new tanker takes up to three years to order, companies hoping to cash in on the rally are mostly limited to existing vessels, they said.

In all, 184 clean tankers worth $3.79 billion were sold in the seven months to July, according to VesselsValue data. That’s the highest value and number of transactions in at least five years.