Seacurus Bulletin 10/07/2014

Seacurus Bulletin 10/07/2014




Pollution Alliance

Freight and passenger ocean shipping has long been criticised by some for producing unacceptable amounts of air and water borne pollutants and now the Trident Alliance, a coalition of vessel operators and ship owners, many of whom are principally car carriers, focused on the robust enforcement of lower maritime sulphur emission regulations throughout the shipping industry, has now been formally launched. The eleven founder members are American Roll-on Roll-off Carrier (ARC), EUKOR Car Carriers, Höegh Autoliners, J. Lauritzen, Maersk, Rickmers-Linie, Stena, Torvald Klaveness, UECC, Unifeeder, and Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics.



Sulphur Costs

The increased cost of shipping cause by the EU Sulphur Directive, is finally making the headlines. Letters and articles are appearing in national newspapers pointing out that in the absence of any derogation from this directive, which is due to bite in 2015, the costs of operating ships in the European Emission Control Area will rise substantially. Ship owners  have elected not to oppose the measures, merely to point out their likely consequences. It is unclear whether, at any time, the regulators in Brussels  considered the true costs of these regulations, or the practicability of forcing the shipping industry to embrace unproven technology.



Offshore Giant

Ezra Holdings Limited has announced that it will consolidate its offshore support services division, by selling off EMAS Marine into its Oslo listed associated company, EOC Limited, and creating one of the largest offshore support operators in Asia. The combined entities will managing an offshore services platform comprising over $1b in assets, with a fleet of 50 vessels boasting a combined bollard pull of almost 4,000 tons. “By bringing together EMAS Marine and EOC, Ezra has created an offshore solutions provider in the region that is ahead of its peers in terms of fleet capabilities,” said Lionel Lee, Ezra’s group ceo and managing director.




Drug Smoke

A fire on a North Sea ferry which sparked a major rescue operation was started by a drunk passenger who was smoking cannabis in his cabin. Boden George Hughes, 26, admitted arson during a brief hearing at Newcastle Crown Court Monday. The fire on the DFDS Newcastle to Amsterdam happened on December 28 when the vessel was 30 miles off the North Yorkshire coast. Six people were winched off the ferry which was carrying around 1,000 people and helicoptered to hospital. Hughes, who also admitted affray, pleaded guilty to arson on the basis that he was drunk, was smoking cannabis in a bong.



Refuge Action

Chairman of the London P&I Club John Lyras has petitioned the international community for action on ports of refuge in the club’s 2014 Annual Report. Joining ICS, the International Union of Maritime Insurance (IUMI), Asian Shipowners Forum (ASF), Lloyd’s Register (LR) and the International Salvage Union (ISU), Lyras referenced the recent plight of chemical tanker Maritime Maisie, which remained stricken and adrift in the open ocean for over three months. “There is no easy answer. It is understandable that communities in areas of coastline where refuge may be sought will be reluctant to be exposed to the risk of pollution,” he said.



Djibouti Dispute

DP World’s 30 year concession at Djibouti’s Doraleh Container Terminal has been called into question as the country investigates the awarding of the contract in 2006. The global terminal operator has confirmed that the Office of the Inspector General of the Republic of Djibouti is investigating the concession and that it has filed for arbitration before the London Court of International Arbitration. DP World has accepted Djibouti’s offer to continue running the terminal during arbitration, to "maintain the status quo and mitigate disruption at the terminal." Opened in 2008, in 2013 the terminal handled 743,000 teu.






Spreading Fears

While the current Asian piracy spike is based on a very specific security problem, as pirates and criminals have been hijacking vessels to steal oil cargoes. Experts are stressing that the problem does not necessarily end there. While the ongoing threat to tankers in the Malacca Straits, surrounding waters and anchorages is set to continue the problem could be set to spread. The message from SAMI is that other vessel types could soon become targets too, and so it is imperative that steps are taken to ensure that necessary security measures are in place. This piracy epidemic may evolve into a more random “smash and grab” form.




Ships Attacked

As if to prove the point above, three more ships have been subjected to robbery attempts in Indonesian waters latest intelligence reveals. At Priok anchorage five armed robbers boarded the anchored vehicle carrier Barcelona (built 1994) and took one crew member hostage temporarily while they stole engine spares before escaping. In the second incident six armed robbers boarded the VLGC G Commander (built 1995) about 5 nautical miles east of Karimun Kecil Island. They took one crew member hostage temporarily in the engine room while they stole engine parts. They then escaped after the crew mustered and raised the alarm.



UK Risks

A lack of security off the coast of Nigeria threatens seafarers as well as the UK economy, according to a UK Chamber of Shipping study. Due to be published 10 July, the report shows that maritime crime in the Gulf of Guinea exposes almost all of the UK’s GBP6.3bn ($10.7bn) annual trade with the region to risks, including 12% of oil imported into the UK. The study also states that ships in the region are attacked at least once per week, with a significant proportion of the attacks unreported. Over the past 10 years 45 seafarers have been killed and 459 held hostage in the region and, for 2013, 60% of attacks were within Nigerian territorial waters.




Develop Economy

Piracy off Somalia’s coast would fall sharply if the country’s economy was more developed, a study says. Local elites and communities in remote areas protect pirates because they lack an income, it adds. The study, by the University of Oxford and King’s College London, says Somalia witnessed a surge in pirate attacks when territory was contested or elections took place. This suggested the behaviour of clan leaders in Somalia was similar to that of politicians in Italy and Taiwan, who extended protection to criminals when they needed extra funds to further political ambitions, the study adds.




Dreadful Suffering

Former hostage Abul Kashem still cannot believe he’s alive. As one of seven Bangladeshi sailors who spent three-and-a-half years as captives of Somali pirates, he recently arrived at Dhaka’s Shahjalal International Airport to great relief. The rescued crew has spoken of the dreadful conditions, the pain, fear and suffering which he endured. "It was a harrowing experience, seeing a fellow sailor being shot to death," said one of the crew, his voice shaking. "Then we had to put his body in the ship’s refrigerator to prevent decomposition." The families suffered too, "We were constantly fearing the worst" one father stated.





Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions


Best regards,

S Jones
Seacurus Ltd


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