Top Ten Maritime News Stories 17/02/2015

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 17/02/2015

1. Pirates Attack and Leave Bomb
A Thailand-registered tanker was boarded by eight armed men who siphoned its fuel and planted an improvised explosive device (IED) on the tanker’s bridge while it was underway in the Strait of Malacca off Port Klang, Malaysia.
The 3,254 dwt "Lapin", was loaded with 2,000 tonnes of bunker oil and 5 tonnes of diesel oil before departing from Singapore to Thailand with 15 crew members on board. The tanker was boarded by eight men armed with guns.
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2. Coastguard Jailed for Botched Rescue
A South Korean coast guard captain has been sentenced to four years jail for negligence during the rescue operation of the ‘Sewol’ ferry in South Korea last April.  Kim Kyung-il was in charge of the first coast guard ship to reach the sinking vessel. Prosecutors alleged Mr Kyung-il wasted time and delayed the evacuation of victims, resulting in avoidable deaths. The court ruled less people would have died if he had ordered them off the ship immediately. 
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3. HK Ferry Captain Convicted
The captain of a passenger ferry has been convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to eight years in jail for his role in the fatal 2012 Lamma ferry disaster near Hong Kong in which 39 people lost their lives. Captain Lai Sai-ming was Master of the Sea Smooth commuter ferry on October 1, 2012 when it struck the passenger vessel Lamma IV, causing 39 deaths and over 100 injured. Sai on 39 counts of manslaughter and for endangering the safety of others at sea.
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4. Tanker Market Hotting Up Nicely
The attractiveness of the tanker market is difficult to be ignored at the moment, with spot VLCC earnings averaging more than $50,000/day during the fourth quarter of 2014 and $70,00/day for the year to date. As such, it was only a matter of time before ship owners turned to shipyards to book more VLCC berthing slots. During January 12 VLCC newbuilding orders placed, causing the VLCC orderbook to surpass the 100 vessel mark.
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5. 2015 Looking a Lot Brighter
2015 will be good for the shipowners with sector specific risks projected to decline and new investment slated to flow in, the investment analysts. Cheaper fuel will be a major positive for shipping companies this year, according to Zacks. The slump in crude is expected to significantly reduce costs of bunker fuel prices this year. Despite a rally last week, the specter of a worldwide glut has kept prices nearly 50% lower than the highs achieved in mid-2014.
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6. Funding and Equity Needed to Fund Progress
Private equity can offer crucial funding for required advances in marine technology, industry adviser Moore Stephens has argued. At a recent seminar maritime efficiency specialist Fathom Shipping’s Alison Jarabo noted that technological solutions are emerging – among them scrubbers, ballast water treatment and ship performance management systems. But the market will fail unless shipowners and operators have the finances to deploy the technologies.
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7. Alternative Canal Route Needs Investment
Nicaragua’s Secretary for National Policy, Paul Oquist has submitted the project for construction of inter-oceanic Nicaragua Grand Canal, to the institutions of the European Union.   Nicaragua is seeking both financial and political support from the EU members, as it struggles to emerge from poverty and achieve economic independence. According to Oquist, the move is aimed at seeking technological expertise in building the canal.
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8. COSCO Buys then Sells
Following the recent announcement ordering 10 drybulk vessels, Cosco Group announced that it has sold eight old bulkers with a total capacity of 553,798 dwt for scrapping.  The vessels were sold to different third parties for scrap for approximately RMB82.2m ($13.3m). Cosco said it recognized losses from the disposal of approximately RMB182.2m. Cosco has made plans to scrap a total of 41 vessels this year as part of its fleet optimization plan.
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9. MOL Vessel In Flames In US
Firefighters battled a two-alarm blaze in the superstructure of a cargo ship berthed at the Port of Oakland on Sunday evening. The fire was reported on Sunday aboard the MOL Contribution berthed at Pier 32 at the port. The Oakland Fire Department said the fire broke out in an officer’s cabin about five floors above the ship’s main deck. Firefighters were faced with heavy smoke and tight quarters in battling the blaze. The fire was soon brought under control.
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10. Hyundai Goes Round for New FPSO
Hyundai Heavy Industries has completed the construction of the world’s largest cylindrical-shaped FPSO (floating production, storage and offloading). The ‘Goliat’ FPSO was loaded onto the world’s biggest marine transport vessel ‘Dockwise Vanguard’ in South Korea to travel to the Goliat oilfield in the Barents Sea for ENI Norge. The 60-day journey will see the vessel travel around the southern tip of Africa. The ‘Goliat’ has a diameter of 107 metres. 
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Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions  www.seacurus.com

 

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