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The Technical Reference (TR) 56 for Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) is expected to provide a ‘safe, efficient, sustainable and transparent’ technical framework for conducting LNG bunkering operations in Singapore.

The Singapore Government Friday launched the Technical Reference (TR) 56 for Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG).

According to Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), the Singapore Government has been working closely with industry players to advance the development of the port into a leading LNG bunkering and gas trading hub.

'We are very good at what we used to do in conventional bunkering,' said Goh Tiak Boon, chairman, Chemical Standards Committee, at the launch ceremony.

'We are very good at what we do in the LNG operations on its own; but the TR 56 not only is it new it brings together some vastly different forms of operations into one.

'Actually to be fair, not all parts of the operations that we are talking about in TR 56 are different from conventional bunkering and LNG operations.

'There are similar parts but there are also areas where they are different simply because we are dealing with different products.'

Goh noted the TR 56 still having 'room for improvement'.

'There are things that we will do in the future in the technical reference after experience,' he says.

'We will find better ways but we will still arrive at the same TR 56. So I think we have to take this with an open mind and learn from that.'

Meanwhile, Goh noted three key reasons of TR 56's importance.

'Clearly, the implementation of the IMO sulphur caps come 2020 is an impetus for us to put something in place if Singapore wants to offer LNG as an alternative clean fuel that will meet those standards. so in order to do that we will need to have some procedures in place to serve fuel,' he explains.

'I will also say TR 56 provides a common platform for all the individual or future participants to develop safe work procedures on a common platform such that we have something we are aligned to and that we can come together and operate in an efficient manner.

'Last but not least, I think it also gives confidence to the people who are participating in the resupply chain that there is a safe and sustainable way of operating in so that it will promote a grow of LNG and also business activities in Singapore.'

The MPA’s LNG bunkering pilot programme commenced early this year and will utilise TR 56 to guide the implementation of operational protocols by licensed LNG bunkering suppliers, which will help the industry gain operational experience in LNG bunkering.

'While it may take time for LNG to take off as a marine fuel globally, we have taken steps to kick-start LNG bunkering in Singapore through our LNG Bunkering Pilot Programme, one of them being the development of TR 56,' said Capt M Segar, MPA’s assistant chief executive (operations).

'The document will ensure Pavilion Gasand FueLNG, MPA’s two appointed LNG bunker supplier licensees, conduct LNG bunkering operations of high quality with regards to safety as well as quantity and quality assurance.'

This sentiment was echoed by Michael Chia, chairman of FueLNG Pte Ltd.

'The Technical Reference provides strong guidance to LNG bunker licence holders on the operating parameters of LNG Bunkering. Of particular importance for this nascent industry are the guidelines on safety and reliability.'

The various agencies and companies involved in the development of TR 56 are as follows:

Government agencies:
- Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore
- Energy Market Authority of Singapore
- Singapore Civil Defence Force
- Ministry of Manpower

Bunker suppliers:
- ExxonMobil Singapore
- Pavilion Energy
- BP Singapore Pte. Limited
- Shell Singapore
- Mitsui & Co. (Asia Pacific) Pte. Ltd.

Associations:
- Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers Singapore
- International Bunker Industry Association
- Singapore Shipping Association
- Singapore Nautical Institute

Testing, Measurement, Metrology
- National Metrology Centre
- SGS Testing & Control Services Singapore Pte Ltd
- Sentek Marine & Trading Pte Ltd

Class Societies:
- DNV GL
- Lloyd's Register Marine
- American Bureau of Shipping
- Bureau Veritas

Equipment/Terminal:
- Wartsila
- Singapore LNG Corporation
- FMC Technologies
- Keppel
- Rolls Royce
- GTT

Shipowners & Operators:
- Mitsui O.S.K.Lines
- NYK Shipmanagement
- Norgas
- Tokyo Gas Asia
- Global Energy

TR 56 launch

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