New marine fuelling vessel to increase efficiency and reduce congestion at Port of Tauranga

Tauranga Moana’s seaport is the new home of a nimble, safe ship-refuelling vessel that will play a significant role in refuelling coastal traders, international cargo vessels and other large vessels operating in the Bay of Plenty region.


New marine fuelling vessel to increase efficiency and reduce congestion at Port of Tauranga
A traditional whakatau (welcoming ceremony) attended by Mobil staff, local dignitaries and members of local Iwi (Māori tribal groups) welcomed the MT Korimako to its new home at Tauranga Moana’s (Tauranga harbour’s) seaport on Friday 30 April
The new 65-metre state-of-the-art “bunkering” barge, MT Korimako will help to increase the efficiency of refuelling operations at Port of Tauranga for Mobil Oil New Zealand Limited (Mobil) marine fuels customers. 

Arriving from Australia, where it has been in operation since it was commissioned, the Korimako – previously named the Anatoma – has been re-flagged to Aotearoa New Zealand, and commenced servicing vessels in Tauranga Moana on Wednesday 5 May.

Mobil lead country manager Andrew McNaught said the company engaged  the MT Korimako in Tauranga Moana  to meet the needs of its customers, as well as improve Mobil’s marine refuelling capability and efficiency. He said the vessel would bring additional capacity to the port, along with all the superior safety features that would be expected of such a state-of-the-art vessel.

“The MT Korimako will deliver noticable improvements to the  Port of Tauranga’s productivity by reducing waiting times for refuelling,” said Mr McNaught. 

“The ability to fuel vessels berthed at Sulphur Point as well as at the port’s land-based refuelling berths will also reduce port congestion, as vessels will no longer have to wait for berth space to become available in order to simply refuel. In addition, the MT Korimako means that ships can be refuelled while they are loading or unloading cargo, which will be particularly useful in periods of high demand.

“Port of Tauranga is one of Aotearoa’s largest, busiest and fastest growing ports, so it’s vital that we find ways to ensure efficient and safe ship refuelling operations here. In Mobil’s opinion, the presence of the new barge will have significant benefits to vessels entering Tauranga Moana by reducing congestion, and this benefits both the port and the community,” said Mr McNaught.

The new service will offer two grades of IMO-compliant low-sulphur fuel to both international and domestic vessels berthed at Sulphur Poinr, helping to meet the requirements of Aotearoa’s obligations under the incoming International Maritime Organization marine fuels standards. 

Built in 2012 and operating since then without incident, the MT Korimako will be the only marine refuelling vessel operating in Aotearoa. It will be operated in Aotearoa by Mount Bunkering Limited, a division of the ASP Ships Group. 

The ASP Ships Group has extensive experience in New Zealand in the liquid fuels industry and through their wholly owned subsidiary Silver Fern Shipping which presently carries and distributes approximately 65% of the country’s liquid fuel products through its two eco-tanker vessels, the MT Matuku and the MT Kokako.

The MT Korimako is extremely manouverable, with a bow  thruster that will enable it to navigate narrow or tricky areas of the port, and has on-board emergency spill response capabilities.

About the MT Korimako 

Operator: Mount Bunkering Limited (part of the ASP Ships Group)
Year built: 2012
Length: 65 metres
Width: 12 metres
Draught: 3.5 metres
Moulded depth: 5.2 metre, double-hulled vessel 


-Bow thruster for additional manoeuverability

-Double-hull configuration improves vessel safety

-Capacity of 1.4 million litres of marine fuel (1,400 metric tonnes)

-Will deliver two grades of IMO-compliant Low Sulphur Marine Gas Oil [LSMGO], ~200mt DMA 0.001%S (marine diesel), and ~1200mt DMB 0.01%S (marine diesel)

-Nominal pump rates of 300 tonnes per hour, per pump, and up to 600mt per hour total capability

-Full-time local crew of 5

The MT Korimako will help to increase the efficiency of refuelling operations at Port of Tauranga for Mobil marine fuels customers.