KNOT Offshore Partners (KNOP) says it may switch some of its shuttle tankers to the conventional tanker market to offset weak prospects in the North Sea.

The delayed resumption of activity in the North Sea, in particular in the Norwegian sector, is said to be dampening shuttle tanker demand and charter rates where four of KNOPs vessels typically operate.

“We believe this situation could persist in 2023 with demand for shuttle tankers remaining below the levels of available tonnage,” the shipowner said.