Maersk, Shanghai International Port Group Sign ‘Green’ Fuel Partnership

Henry Huang, Marketing Director of SIPG (seated, left) and Jens Eskelund, Chief Representative, North Asia, A.P. Moller-Maersk sign the MOU. Alex Yan, President of SIPG, Jinshan Gu, Chairman of SIPG, Vincent Clerc, CEO of A.P. Moller-Maersk, Ditlev Blicher, President, Maersk Asia Pacific (standing, from left) witness the signing ceremony. Photo via Maersk.

A.P. Moller-Maersk (Maersk) announced in late March that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with Shanghai International Port Group (SIPG) on strategic cooperation for a Shanghai port methanol marine fuel project.

The two parties said they’re joining together to explore green methanol fuel vessel-to-vessel bunkering operation after delivery of over a dozen Maersk green methanol container vessels in 2024.

“Maersk has set a net-zero emissions target for 2040 across the entire business, and the delivery and operation of its 19 vessels with dual-fuel engines able to operate on green methanol will accelerate the evolution of climate neutral shipping,” the company said in a statement. “Therefore, establishing port bunkering infrastructure for methanol is imperative and critical to achieve this goal.”

“Collaborating with ports globally to build green fuel bunkering infrastructures is necessary to service methanol vessels. It is an important step as Maersk strives to lead the decarbonization of end-to-end supply chains and make a meaningful environmental impact in this decade,” A.P. Moller-Maersk CEO Vincent Clerc said.

“We are very pleased to form the partnership with SIPG, leveraging its strong capabilities in bunkering service and port operation,” Clerc continued. “Through joint efforts, we can provide low-carbon logistics service for our customers, also contributing to China’s pledge to be carbon neutral by 2060. Meanwhile, we also endeavor to cultivate synergies with SIPG and fuel manufacturers to optimize fuel infrastructure efficiencies.”

As SIPG, which is the main operator of the world’s busiest container port, commits to becoming a leader in developing green and ecological ports, the agreement also supports the  Port of Shanghai’s goal of becoming one of the world’s first commercial green methanol refueling points, and as a regional green methanol fuel bunkering center.

“We are happy to collaborate with Maersk in support of its mission to decarbonize the shipping industry,” Shanghai International Port Group Chairman Gu Jinshan said. “As the demand for sustainable fuels increase, establishing the green fuel bunkering service will be another milestone for SIPG, improving port services and enhancing the competitiveness of Shanghai port, in a bid to transform the company into a low-carbon and eco-friendly energy hub in Asia Pacific.”

“SIPG will continue to work with shipping companies to foster Shanghai shipping hub gateway and the green, low-carbon transformation of shipping industry in Shanghai,” he added.

Maersk and SIPG have said they plan to deepen cooperation in stages. In the first phase, SIPG, as Maersk’s potential energy bunkering service provider, will carry out services of vessel-to-vessel bunkering and fuel tank storage at port.

In the potential second stage, the parties would explore how to form an all-round energy strategic partnership to promote the extension from bunkering services to the upstream of the green methanol industry chain.