Many older tankers are undergoing extra surveys to extend their lifespan, with some even opting for a fifth survey at 25 years old. This trend has coincided with the rise of the so-called shadow fleet, including sanction-busting and uninsured tankers.

While these pose environmental and political concerns, they've also contributed to improved conditions in legitimate tanker freight markets.

A new ship crash in the US A new ship crash in the US

Braemar suggests that mainstream charterers might consider using older tankers over 19 years old, especially as there's little growth expected in modern-eco tonnage capacity in the near future. This means the 'under 20' rule could start having more exceptions as time goes on.