(EnergyAsia, March 27 2012, Tuesday) — As a boost to its national marine fuel supply network, Caltex Australia has added a new 65-metre bunker tanker, Anatoma, to its Sydney operations.

The company’s leading downstream oil company said it has signed a service agreement with SVITZER to operate the double-hulled bunker tanker, which will begin delivering fuel oil and marine gasoil (diesel) within Port Botany and Port Jackson in coming months.

With the to carry 1.6 million litres of fuel, Anatoma replaces the single-hulled Esar Sydney, which has been in operation since the mid 1970s and was limited to operating within Port Botany.

Caltex also owns and the 50-metre, double-hulled Bunker V operating at the port of Brisbane and last year acquired Graham Bailey Pty Ltd to support its national marine fuel operations.

Phil Amos, Caltex’s national manager for lubricants and direct sales said the new tanker will play a “significant role” in refuelling coastal traders and international cargo vessels visiting Port Botany and the booming cruise market in Sydney Harbour.

Caltex would also have access to Sydney Harbour’s White Bay 6 berth, which opened last April in response to growing demand.

Mr Amos said: “Sydney’s cruise market has been growing at an extraordinary rate for the past six years. According to cruise industry figures, visits to Sydney in 2011/12 are expected to increase 43%, and this has caused a marked increase in the sector’s demand for bunker fuel.

“Anatoma will have an important role in meeting much of this cruise industry growth as well as continuing to provide reliable supply to the city’s diverse range of marine fuel customers, including cargo ships visiting Port Botany.”

SVITZER managing director Mark Malone said:

“We are delighted and honoured to continue our long running business relationship and partnership with Caltex and look forward to the smooth introduction of the Anatoma into the Sydney bunkering market.”

Caltex’s senior marine adviser Captain Phil Hickey said the bunker tanker would be phased into full service over the next few months.

He said: “Since the Anatoma has a greater length, beam and moulded depth than Esar Sydney, several modifications have been required at the bunker berth including changes to the fenders, gangways and marine loading arms.”