Seacurus Top Ten Daily News Stories 05/09/2014
1. Anniversary of MLC In Focus
It is just over a year on from the Maritime Labour Convention (MLC) 2006 coming into force and if you were in any doubt over its effectiveness and impact the banning of the containership Vega Auriga from all Australian ports and its subsequent detention in New Zealand should be ample demonstration. his demonstrates that where authorities do apply the standards of MLC it really does have teeth and owners will not be able to run away from it, and there are plenty of places in the world where this will happen. As the convention gains further traction it can only be good for seafarers and the industry.
2. Dodgy Oil Official Arrested
An oil official from the Indonesian State firm PERTAMINA has been taken into police custody, accused of being involved in five year fuel scandal, making off with more than $100m from fuel syphoned from ships. The Riau-based official, was taken in by police following an investigation into suspect oil transactions. The Indonesian police suspect that the suspect, named as "Yusri" and another accomplice have been conducting ship-to-ship fuel transfer four times a month since 2008.
3. Port Corruption and Theft Scandal
A giant corruption scandal involving some 24 people including 12 civil servants at Port Klang Free Zone (PKFZ) has been rumbled. The syndicate has cost the government up to RM4bn in lost revenue, local media reported. "RM1.67 billion worth of cigarettes and alcohol were brought into the country under their watch since 2011… but from that amount, only a total value of RM420 million was declared,” said Datuk Seri Mohd Shukri Abdull, deputy chief commissioner (Operations) of the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC). The commission is looking at making more arrests soon.
4. Bunker Supplier License Cancelled
The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) has cancelled the bunker supplier and bunker craft operator licences of Northwest Resources, following a jail sentence for the company’s director for corruption. The bunkering licences of Northwest Resources were cancelled with effect from 1 September 2014.
The licences cancellation follows the conviction of Leong Kok Kheong, director of Northwest Resources, for 50 counts of bunkering-related offences committed in May and June 2008. Leong was convicted after he pleaded guilty to 15 charges, with the rest taken into consideration.
5. Massive New Indian Investment
India’s largest private sector shipowner, Great Eastern Shipping Co, plans to invest up to INR24bn ($400m) by March 2017 to acquire newbuildings in the dry bulk and tanker sectors, and a jack-up rig. Around $200m will be used for six vessels on order, comprising five 81,000 dwt kamsarmax bulk carriers and one 50,000 dwt medium-range (MR) tanker. The remaining $200m will be spent on a newbuilding jack-up rig. Two of the bulk carriers, ordered in 2012 from Japan’s Tsuneishi Shipbuilding, will be delivered in mid-2015, while the remaining three, being built at China’s Yangzijiang Shipbuilding, will join the fleet at different stages in 2016.
6. Charity Supports Distressed Crew
The Apostleship of the Sea (AoS) is supporting the crew of a cargo vessel whose colleague went overboard on the River Humber on Wednesday evening. The 18 year old Indonesian seafarer was from the ship "Freya" which was bound for Immingham port. The Maritime and Coastguard Agency said a comprehensive search of the river was conducted, but the seafarer was not found.
7. Deepwater Horizon Claims Roll On
BP Plc was "grossly negligent" for its role in the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico four years ago, a U.S. district judge said on Thursday in a ruling that could add billions of dollars in fines to the more than $42 billion in charges taken so far for the worst offshore disaster in U.S. history. Shares of BP traded in the United States fell 5 percent, or $2.40, to $45.31, eroding about $8.8 billion of its market value. BP shares traded in London closed down nearly 6 percent, the worst one day slide in more than four years. Last year a judge ruled that BP was mostly at fault and that two other companies in the case were not as much to blame.
8. Another Pirate Battle for Iranian Navy
Iran’s naval forces have once again managed to thwart a spate of organized pirate attacks targeting an Iranian oil tanker in high seas. The Iranian Navy said in a statement on Tuesday that pirates in 12 boats made three attempts to hijack the Iranian oil tanker in the waters of the Gulf of Aden and Bab el-Mandeb Strait early this morning. However, the Iranian Navy’s 31st fleet of war vessels, comprising Bayandor destroyer and Bandar Abbas auxiliary ship, successfully foiled all three attacks against the ship and chased off the assailants.
9. NATO Focus on Maritime Security
As NATO meets in Wales, there is an important window of opportunity to develop a long term plan for maritime security. Summits are an opportunity to think about strategies and responses to future challenges. The safety of our seas often escapes public attention but with piracy on the rise in African seas and resources facing increasing pressure, the issue is becoming more and more important. Protecting the seas is vital for a number of reasons. The sustainable exploitation of ocean resources has been identified in the so-called Blue Growth agenda and it is ever more important to start planning for the future.
10. Iraq Sues Greek Shipping Company
Iraq said it filed a lawsuit against Greek shipping company Marine Management Services (MMS) for its role in the export of crude from the Kurdistan region, which Baghdad says is illegal. The case is the latest move by Baghdad to deter customers and thwart independent exports of crude from the autonomous Kurdistan region. The federal government claims sole authority to manage sales of all the oil in Iraq. The Iraqi oil ministry said on Thursday that MMS operated five vessels that had transported oil on behalf of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) from a Turkish port.
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions www.seacurus.com
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