Genco Shipping & Trading Limited (NYSE: GNK) (“Genco” or the “Company”) announced today the completion of its exhaust gas cleaning systems (“scrubbers”) program which consisted of installing scrubbers on Genco’s 17 Capesize vessels. This represents a key pillar of our previously announced comprehensive plan towards compliance with International Maritime Organization (“IMO”) regulations that limit sulfur emissions from vessels to 0.5% down from 3.5% on a global basis to improve air quality.
John C. Wobensmith, Chief Executive Officer, commented, “The execution of our scrubber program marks an important step for Genco in what was the busiest drydocking period in Company history. The completion of this initiative has enabled us to comply with IMO 2020 regulations in a manner that meaningfully reduces sulfur emissions and strengthens our future prospects. Specifically, given the timely nature of our scrubber retrofits on our Capesize vessels, we have been able to capture the differentials between compliant and high sulfur fuel so far in the early stages of compliance, significantly de-risking the initial investment. With no scheduled drydockings for our Capesize vessels for the balance of 2020, we plan to maximize fleet-wide utilization for these vessels while re-implementing our active chartering approach. As such, we strategically repositioned select Capesize vessels after the completion of their scrubber installations towards the Atlantic Basin during the end of 2019 to better capture market fundamentals. With a sizeable fleet and strong balance sheet, including an estimated $162 million of cash as of December 31, 2019, Genco remains poised to capitalize on favorable long-term drybulk supply and demand fundamentals, while creating near-term shareholder value through our regular quarterly cash dividend policy of $0.175 per share.”
In addition to the installation of scrubbers on our 17 Capesize vessels, the balance of our fleet consisting of minor bulk vessels is consuming ultra-low sulfur compliant fuel.