Stolt-Nielsen’s swoop for more Odfjell stock has brought the question of a chemical tanker mega-merger back into the spotlight.

Market leader Stolt-Nielsen snapped up shares held by Odfjell heir Johan Odvar Odfjell last night, to boost its holding in its Oslo-listed rival.

Analysts believe competition authorities would be unlikely to block any deal even though a combined operation would have more than 240 vessels.