Top Ten Maritime News Stories 04/06/2015

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 04/06/2015


1. War Risk Cash for Yemen Trips

The deteriorating political and security situation in Yemen has prompted the Philippine Overseas Employment Administration governing board to declare it as war risk trading area for seafarers. "The POEA, after consultation with its social partners, determines war risk trading areas and ports under warlike operations, and the amount of premium pay to which seafarers shall be entitled when sailing in these areas and ports,” said Labor secretary Rosalinda Baldoz, who is also the chairperson of the POEA Governing Board. The resolution states that Filipino seafarers sailing in Yemen Ports shall now be entitled to premium pay.



2. BIMCO Welcomes New President

BIMCO today announced that Philippe Louis-Dreyfus, of Louis Dreyfus Armateurs, will be its new president for the next two years. In his accession speech at BIMCO’s AGM in Edinburgh, new President Philippe Louis-Dreyfus described BIMCO as “the global association that should be closest to the commercial realities of shipping business.” Leadership and practical support for shipping businesses emerged as strong themes of his vision for BIMCO in the coming years of his presidency. The new President praised the work carried out by outgoing President John Denholm.




3. New Continental Charter Against Piracy

African leaders will meet later this year in Togo to discuss drawing up a continental charter against maritime piracy, the country’s authorities have announced. Foreign minister Robert Dussey said heads of state and government from the African Union would be in the capital Lomé in November to discuss the problem. "The Lomé summit aims at defining a common strategy against maritime insecurity in Africa," Dussey told reporters. "At least 205 attacks on ships were registered in the Gulf of Guinea between 2005 and May 2015. Togo’s coasts saw eight attacks, of which seven were foiled by the country’s navy."




4. IMO Begins Safety Sessions

The Secretary General of the IMO has opened the ninety-fifth session of the Maritime Safety Committee. He reviewed some important issues on the agenda; namely, passenger ship safety and maritime migrants; and stated his expectations on the future work of the MSC. On maritime security, the Committee will discuss the issue of cyber threats in addition to counter-piracy measures. There is also a debate on the cost of the LRIT audit. While IMO activities to help shipping to move towards cleaner energy consumption, will see the expected adoption of the IGF Code.




5. Shipping Without Borders

Nor-Shipping has heard how geographical and market boundaries are becoming less important than multi-discipline knowledge. Giants from both the offshore and shipping sector joined for an interesting debate discussing  borderless businesses, strategic alliances and improved information systems. Peter Evensen, the president of Teekay, described the transnational aspect of the company and their decision to have a "global crew", not seafarers from one specific nation. He emphasized the important aspect of ‘borderlessness’ in the company’s operations.



6. Marshall Islands Caught in Climate Storm

Far out in the Pacific Ocean, the tiny Republic of the Marshall Islands has taken on a vital role in international shipping, with its flag flying over the third-largest number of ships in the world. So when the nation’s foreign minister showed up at a recent meeting of the International Maritime Organization and proposed limiting the amount of climate-warming gases that the shipping industry could emit, he caused a stir. “It’s a matter of survival for us,” Tony de Brum, the minister said. The Marshall Islands consist of low-lying coral atolls that could be swamped by rising sea levels associated with climate change.




7. BIMCO Takes Over KPI Project

BIMCO has today announced that it has taken ownership of the unique Shipping KPI System that allows shipowners and managers to compare their ships’ efficiency against the performance of the industry and sector averages. The KPI System is unique because it is based on a standard of 64 different performance indicators (such as ship unavailability and number of environmental related deficiencies) to allow the most specific and accurate comparison of ships – within each sector and more broadly across the industry – that is currently available. The data collected is anonymised, so it does not compromise commercially sensitive information.



8. Wind Power for Ships Progresses

Norsepower Oy Ltd. (Finland) and Bore Ltd today announced the successful sea trial of Norsepower’s Rotor Sail Solution, a new wind propulsion technology for ships. The sea trials, verified by NAPA and supported by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, confirm fuel savings of 2.6% using a single small Rotor Sail on a route in the North Sea. With these fuel savings, the technology has a payback period of 4 years. Based on the trials, Norsepower and Bore believe that a full system on Estraden with two rotors has the potential to deliver 5% efficiency savings on an ongoing basis. Norsepower forecasts savings of 20% for vessels.



9. War is Good for Shipping

The rise of geopolitical conflicts around the globe could prove to be positive for shipping. “Unfortunately whenever you have a conflict its positive for shipping overall,” Leon Patitsas, founder and ceo of Atlas Maritime told a conference at Nor-Shipping. “Whenever you have geopolitical conflicts the price of oil goes up and if the price goes price goes up substantially then people are going to want to buy more oil and they’re going to want to build their strategic reserves “If that happens then the costs of shipping are going to rise and it might be positive both for the offshore industry as might because it becomes more profitable to sell oil" he added.




10. Standard Club Results Issued

Standard Club’s combined ratio improved by 4.3% to 94.6%, reflecting strong business retention levels. The Consolidated Income and Expenditure Account for the Club has once again seen a growth in earned income during the year. Gross premiums earned have increased by 1.5% to US$ 247.3 million. Earned premiums net of reinsurance have decreased by 0.8% to US$ 211.4 million due to higher costs of reinsurance purchased during the year. The 2014 policy year has experienced a reduction in claims frequency of 4% over the preceding year, although the gross average value of open claims files increased by 52%.




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