Seacurus Daily Top Ten News Stories 23/09/2014

Seacurus Daily Top Ten News Stories 23/09/2014

1. Greek Owners Still Grabbing Opportunities

Despite the low freights, the stagnating sale & purchase market and bank lending restrictions, opportunities do arise and Greek shipowners are not shy in jumping on them. For large Greek shipping companies finance and opportunities abound, and they have invested heavily in modern eco vessels, and while the going is much tougher for smaller owners as they battle unaided against poor shipping markets and the dearth of finance and capital, they, in the main, are also making headway. This is reflected in a new survey which confirms that for the first time the Greek-owned fleet is on the other side of the 300m dwt threshold.




2. Master Praised for Rescue of Hundreds of Migrants

The South Korean office of the United Nations refugee agency said Tuesday its head has expressed gratitude to the captain of a local ship who rescued hundreds of asylum seekers on a wrecked vessel earlier this month in the Mediterranean. The freighter AMS Pegasus, owned by South Korea’s No. 4 shipper Korea Line Corp., rescued 387 people on a wooden boat in distress on Sept. 11 near the Sicily Island of Italy, according to the Korea Shipowners’ Association. Many of the people aboard are believed to be asylum seekers from Egypt, Syria, Somalia, Palestine and Sudan who had been drifting for about 15 days without enough food and water.



3. US Joins Piracy Watchdog

The US has become the 20th nation to join Asian anti-piracy information sharing centre ReCAAP. Although ReCAAP is based in Singapore and covers the Asian region it accepts membership from nations outside the region. "The US’ accession to ReCAAP signifies the growing strength of the ReCAAP network and demonstrates the importance of international cooperation to effectively address the challenges in combating piracy and armed robbery against ships in Asia," ReCAAP said. This year has seen growing concern over piracy in Southeast Asia this year with 17 small tankers attacked to steal their cargoes. Of the 17 attacks 12 were successful.




4. EU Sword Still Hanging Over Filipinos

Eighty thousand Filipino seafarers employed by European vessels could lose their jobs if training facilities in the Philippines fail international standards. The European Maritime Safety Agency (Emsa) will conduct a final audit by the end of this month or early next month to determine if the Philippines complies with the International Convention on STCW for seafarers. Secretary Antonio Abaya of the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC) said that if the country fails the audit, European Union members might no longer recognize the certificates issued by the Philippine Government to seafarers.



5. Insurers Want Better Risk Profiling

As the people who have to worry about paying out when something goes wrong, the increasing size of vessels concerns marine insurers greatly. Speaking at the IUMI (International Union of Marine Insurance) presentations have highlighted the increasing risks that greater scale in the maritime industry is bringing. Pointing to the newbuilding trends, the risk profile is changing and is set to increase rapidly in the next 20 years. There is a sharp increase in gross tonnage but a much smaller increase in number of vessels. Set against the backdrop of a small premium base and stagnant rates, this is an important factor to consider for the future.




6. Mentoring Focus for Training

Videotel has launched a new edition of its Training, Mentoring and Assessment On Board program which supports the IMO requirement for a standardization of training and assessment for all member state countries as part of the ‘Manila Amendments’. Training, Mentoring and Assessment On Board covers the full range of revised competencies now required for certification as Deck Officers, Engineer Officers and the qualifications required for ratings. Videotel, explained, “Training is a vital element…mentoring by experienced seafarers is an important part of training on board ship".




7. Quantum Giant Heads to Sea

Royal Caribbean’s newest and most technologically advanced ship departed the Meyer Werft shipyard on Monday for the 26-mile journey down the River Ems to the North Sea where final outfitting and testing will take place. The river conveyance, is a unique process that every ship ever constructed at Meyer Werft has taken since 1795 because of the shipyard’s protected inland location in Papenburg, Germany. At 168,666 gross tons and measuring 348 meters long by 41.4 meters wide, the Quantum of the Seas is the largest vessel ever built by Meyer Werft, which also makes it largest ship to go through conveyance process.




8. Aberdeen Getting Smart on Security

Aberdeen Harbour has extended its security solutions coverage using high-capacity backhaul from Siklu, the market leader in millimeter wave backhaul informs the Israel-based tech firm. The next generation security network is used to carry segregated traffic from a number of sources, including streaming HD video images from the latest IP cameras. This was set up and deployed with no disruption to harbour operations. Aberdeen Harbour is the centre of activity for the offshore oil and gas industry’s marine support operations in northwest Europe, and handles around five million tons of cargo a year.




9. Massive Indian Ocean Drug Haul

A combined Australian and New Zealand operation 260 km off the coast of Africa has seized more than 5.6 metric tons of cannabis resin worth an estimated $280 million (AUD). The five day operation involved Royal Australian Navy frigate HMAS Toowoomba and a Royal New Zealand Air Force P-3K2 Orion which was called to assist in bad weather. During an exhaustive search this week, the Australian boarding party discovered cannabis resin in hessian bags stowed in a hidden compartment on the dhow. HMAS Toowoomba is deployed to the Middle East Region as part of the Combined Maritime Forces (CMF).




10. Anti Piracy Choppers Grounded

Most of the German navy’s helicopter fleet is currently out of service. A recurring fault was found on "Sea Lynx" choppers used for the EU’s anti-piracy mission off the Horn of Africa.  Germany’s Defense Ministry confirmed a report saying that 22 of the Bundeswehr’s navy helicopters were currently not in the skies. Fifteen of the Sea Lynx Mk88A choppers were recalled after a recurring fault was identified on the models. A tear about 20 centimeters in length was first noted on the tail of a Sea Lynx aboard the carrier "LĂŒbeck" in June. Precautionary checks then identified similar, but less advanced, problems on several other helicopters.




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


Best regards,

S Jones
Seacurus Ltd


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