Screenshot 2023-10-10 121059
Photo: Maersk

Maersk has announced a change in the way it will bill customers for fuel-related surcharges, with the introduction of its Fossil Fuel Fee (FFF).

Announced today (Friday 31 May), the FFF groups together two previous charges – its bunker adjustment factor surcharge (BAF) and its low sulphur surcharge (LSS) – under a single banner.

In a customer advisory, the Danish shipping giant said: “Our goal is to bring ease and connectivity to your logistics.

“We believe that the simplification to one surcharge related to fuel on ocean will offer multiple benefits. The FFF Tariff will be available from Q3 2024. In other words, it will be effective from 1 July 2024.”

It noted that as of 1 July, all new contractual quotes that were over three months’ validity would be quoted with FFF.

Pre-existing contracts under the old BAF and LSS surcharging schemes will remain in place until their point of renewal – meaning BAF and LSS tariff rates would continue to be published – thereafter transitioning to FFF.

However, commentators were quick to note that precise details of the FFF had yet to be made public, with no indication of the surcharge calculation methodology that would be used.

One, speaking to The Loadstar, even suggested that the move was geared towards helping Maersk recoup “the huge extra cost of methanol,” adding that it sounded very much “like a clever way to wrap up this cost”.

They added: “As always, the devil will be in the detail when the charge is revealed. I think many shippers will be suspicious, particularly when carriers are clearly taking advantage.

“The other question is: will the FFF apply to shipments on scrubber-fitted ships and/or LNG-powered vessels operated by Maersk’s Gemini partner Hapag? It will be interesting to see the reaction from shippers.”

Comment on this article

You must be logged in to post a comment.