“For a long while the technology within fluid storage and movement did not move as rapidly as the technology in other industries. But this has changed in recent years. Hesitancy to develop and deploy new technologies has eroded and we are now seeing the benefits of its deployment.”
Today Tank World Editor, Luke Upton, speaks to Mark Korzec, Director of Oil and Gas Sales for Colfax Corporation, a veteran of over 43 years in the industry and an expert speaker at Tank World Expo. Working with Oil Companies, Engineering firms, and Design Institutes around the globe Mark has gained a unique perspective on our industry and has a particular focus on sharing his experience of tank farm and terminal operations. Mark travels regularly around the world and as such a broad view of the dynamic changes that the global fluid movement is currently undergoing.
Luke Upton (LU): Thanks very much for the time today, you travel a lot in your job, quite simply, what are you seeing out there?
Mark Korzec (MK): No problem. It’s a really interesting time at the moment, and what it really comes down to is a dramatic change in the movement of oil. Traditionally it would flow from east and in particular the Middle East, to the West but now we are seeing an increasing movement from west to east. There are a couple of factors causing this change including the USA exporting its own oil, a rising demand in Asia and the accessing of African oil. In the last 5 years alone there have been over 70 discoveries in Sub-Saharan African and the decline in demand from Europe.
LU: Asia is certainly an interesting area. I know you’ve just got back from a trip out there. Are you seeing some real opportunities for growth?
MK: Absolutely. There really are some incredible things happening in Asia at the moment as it gears up to receive increased quantities of product and become the number one producer of distillate fuels in the world. Being able to cope and develop this demand is the key to the success for a lot of these new facilities.
There is a couple of interesting other developments worth noting too. Singapore continues to thrive but this opens up opportunities for nearby operations who are able to offer a quicker turnaround time, Malaysia being the most obvious to benefit from this. Secondly, at first glance the recently announced Ulsan New Port in South Korea might seem to be placed at a slightly incongruous location away from traditional trade routes but should ice flows continue to change there’s an opportunity for fluids to be transported over the poles which at the moment can’t happen. If this change continues a port like Ulsan will be very well placed to take advantage of this.
LU: So by the sound of things, speed is more important than ever?
MK: Yes, without a doubt. Storage is not the prime objective; it’s now the speed of delivery. And this is one of the dynamic changes we are seeing from all concerned in the value chain.
LU: And the increasing desire for a speedy delivery has also led to a growth in a requirement to be flexible?
MK: That is true. Anyone working in our industry has to be extremely flexible. The variety of fluids demanded now is growing all the time and the speed at which the demand for them changes is quickening. There are so many more types of blends now than when I started out, taking advantage of market desires is a major opportunity.
LU: But the demand for speed and flexibility is aided by the development of technology?
MK: I’d say it is both aided by and driven by technology. For a long while the technology within fluid storage and movement did not move as rapidly as the technology in other industries. But this has changed in recent years. Hesitancy to develop and deploy new technologies has eroded and we are now seeing the benefits of its deployment. To go back to Asia, it is perhaps there where we are seeing the biggest advantages of this new technology. Of course anyone building a new storage facility, as many in Asia are, can use this technology from the start.
LU: In such a global industry, the international nature of Colfax must be an advantage?
MK: Without a doubt, we have offices all over the world and take a global perspective on decisions that both the company makes and also on the advice we offer our clients. That’s one of the reasons why, although USA based I’m looking forward to coming out to Tank World in Dubai in April. It’s always important to meet new people and hear examples from all over the world. And like our clients we too need to be flexible in our solutions and technologies, in this industry you really can’t afford not to be!
LU: So just to conclude, what are some of the key trends you are seeing develop that will influence the future of our industry?
MK: There are definitely some major changes that are already influencing our industry but there’s always some factors that can cause huge changes but cannot be controlled. For example, Japan long had a domestic supply of energy in the form of its nuclear programme but the Tsunami and the resulting Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster of 2011 has turned their energy demands completely around. Who could have predicted this? And similarly political upheaval and strife can often have big impacts but occur suddenly and without warning.
But, what we can confidently say is that there is a higher need for flexibility in what product is produced, that speedy delivery is increasingly important, that new geographic areas are strengthening whilst others struggle and that as always energy security and the price of oil are as important to everyone as always.
LU: Great, many thanks. Looking forward to hearing more in Dubai in April.
Mark Korzec was an expert speaker at and Colfax were a sponsor of Tank World Expo, 14-15 April 2014 at the Dubai World Trade Centre. Colfax Fluid Handling is a global provider of positive displacement pumps (one, two and three screw pumps), API 614 lubrication oil systems, multiphase and gas compression systems for all segments of the oil & gas market. We operate a bevy of renowned brands including Allweiler, Baric, Houttuin, IMO, Rosscor, Tushaco and Warren. Within tank terminals, Colfax supplies pumps for tank and truck loading, unloading, stripping, circulation, blending, injection and transfer – up to 6000 m3/h (26,420 gpm) with a single two screw pump. Colfax supports the GCC through a manufacturing and support facility located in Dammam Saudi Arabia.To learn more about Colfax and how they can work developing solutions for you click here.