Fuel Supplies Maldives (FSM) has brought two new barges to FSM’s carrier fleet (fuel carrier fleet). These two barges are part of the new four barges ordered by FSM from an Egyptian company in 2019 and arrived in the Maldives last month. And local authority registration is still pending.
The barges named MV Hunike and MV Bureki are now at the port of Thilafushi. The barges were built similarly in design with a carrying capacity of 260,000 LTR of fuel per barge at a time and cost MVR 11 million each. This is the same as the cost of a 1000 gt tanker vessel.
The Managing Director of FSM, Mohamed Qasam, stated that the new barges will help to cover the fuel supply around the Maldives and will have a significant increase in the capacity of the company’s fuel supply operations around the country. There has been a delay in bringing the barges due to the COVID pandemic, but they will start operating at the earliest possible.
The building of the remaining two barges is completed and FSM is trying to deliver the vessels within the next 40 days.Managing Director of FSM, Mohamed Qasam
He further stated that the addition of new barges will benefit the FSM’s outsourced businesses and that the lack of direct FSM barge transport to companies like Fenaka Cooperation’s operation areas has caused a great loss to powerhouse operators and businesses.
The two new barges to FSM’s carrier fleet will join with the other 18 barges that are used to supply fuel to the atolls and will be transporting petrol and diesel.
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FSM, a fully owned subsidiary company of the State Trading Organisation (STO), was established in December 2000 with the main objective of fuel distribution in the country and to provide easy and convenient access to fuel throughout the country.
Services provided by FSM include;
- Supplying fuel to the majority of the resorts and islands.
- Industrial and commercial deliveries
- Foreign and local fuel bunkering services.
- Gas stations and retail services
- Consultancy in fuel-related services
- Other maritime services
Despite the fact that FSM maintains a shipyard in the Maldives, the Egyptian company has been granted the newbuilding contract. The current administration’s Transportation Ministry officials endorsed the offer. According to several claims, Transport Ministry employees demand a bribe of 25,000 MVR from vessels built in any part of the Maldives.
It is also a well-known fact that the World Bank funded the construction of two new waste collection boats in the Maldives. As a result, during the visit of a World Bank representative to observe the development of the project, Transport Ministry consultants made him witness the new building bunker barge that was under progress at The Hawks Shipyard.