October 14, 2019 [TankTerminals.com] – Last week on October 2nd and 3rd the annual European Bulk Liquid Storage Summit was organized in Antwerp and covered some of the following topics, Financing trends, IMO and digitalization. Read below some key takeaways from the conference:
“The latest finance trends in tank storage industry” – According to DNB Bank ASA both Merger & Acquisition and Refinancing Market for liquid storage terminals are very healthy. According to DNB it is expected that demand for Capex will continue because of IMO 2020, emerging markets and emerging markets. In addition, M&A will also drive finance demand as there is continued interest of infrastructure funds for “Core+” infra assets and many assets owned by PE funds with investment horizons of 5 years might come to market again.
“IMO 2020 and the impact on the tank storage industry” – From 2020 onwards more grades of marine fuel will need to be stored, while smaller tanks as well as blending capabilities will become more important. Consequently, more tank storage capacity is needed. It is expected that the hub terminals will be able to meet the increasing demand, but for bunker terminals in smaller terminals it will be a challenge.
“Digitalization – from challenges to opportunities” – The port of Antwerp is investing a lot in new technology like drones, smart cameras, autonomous ships and the so-called internet of things (IoT). Pilots with drones and autonomous barges have already taken place and Belgium laws have already been adjusted to facilitate the introduction of these new technologies on a larger scale. It is expected that the first autonomous barges will be operational as from 2020.
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