June 28, 2019 / 8:22 AM / 21 days ago

UPDATE 1-Singapore port authority suspends bunker craft licence of Inter-Pacific Petroleum

(Updates with company statement)

By Roslan Khasawneh

SINGAPORE, June 28 (Reuters) - Singapore’s Maritime Port Authority (MPA) has suspended the bunker craft operator licence of Inter-Pacific Petroleum Pte Ltd, the MPA said in a statement on Thursday.

The MPA suspended the license, which allows Inter-Pacific to operate tankers used to load marine fuel, known as bunker fuel, onto ships, with effect from June 27 until further notice, the statement said.

The licence suspension occurred after “an enforcement check on a bunker tanker operated by Inter-Pacific Petroleum,” the MPA said, without providing further details.

The MPA did not immediately respond to requests for comment.

The suspension “was related to an incident involving an outsourced employee and the company is currently in the process of submitting further information to MPA, including its risk management policy and procedures,” Inter-Pacific said in a statement.

“We will also submit the results of our own internal investigation on the matter.”

The suspension is the latest crackdown by the MPA, which oversees the world’s largest bunkering and marine fuel trading hub.

In May, the MPA stripped marine fuel services provider Southernpec (Singapore) Pte Ltd of both its bunker barge operator and bunker fuel supplier licenses after investigations revealed a breach of the terms of its license and malpractice.

Inter-Pacific also holds a bunker fuel supplier licence in Singapore. In 2018, the company was the 26th-largest supplier by volumes delivered out of 51 other operators, according to the MPA.

Reporting by Roslan Khasawneh, additional reporting by Florence Tan and Jessica Jaganathan; editing by Christian Schmollinger

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