The company, which is part of Danish shipping and oil group A.P. Moller-Maersk and which operates 180 tankers, said it expected rivals to pursue it in a quest for larger fleet sizes and cost savings.
Maersk Tankers Chief Executive Soren Skou said: "I believe the industry will see more balance sheet consolidation in the coming years rather than more pools and that way we’ll get the large-scale advantage on overhead costs, administration and technical issues."
Commercial pools enable shippers to gain marketing clout and volume but do not give shipowners the same economies-of-scale as being a big fleet owner like Maersk.
International shipping has been hit hard by the global economic downturn, but unlike container shipping — the cornerstone of Maersk shipping making up 15 percent of world box ship capacity — tanker markets have suffered less despite a global slump in oil consumption.
"We’re coming off the lows," Skou said, referring to a rebound in tanker rates from lows not seen since the post USA September 11, economic slump. Maersk Tankers controls about seven percent of the world product tanker fleet.