Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 26/11/2015
1. Shipping Anti Corruption Drive
BIMCO, the world’s largest international shipping organisation, has now launched an anti-corruption clause for charter parties. The new clause will give owners and charterers a contractual platform for cooperative action to resist demands for illegal payments from port officials and others. Angus Frew, Secretary General of BIMCO, said: “BIMCO recognises the importance of a united approach by the shipping industry towards stamping out corruption in the ports and places where the world’s merchant fleet trades. “Use of the clause is entirely voluntary – it has been developed for owners and charterers who want to combat corrupt practices in ports".
2. IMB Questions its Own Data
According to the International Maritime Bureau’s (IMB) Piracy Reporting Centre “only one incident of an actual attack” was reported from the Gulf of Guinea for Q3 of this year with the disclaimer that “the real number is believed to be considerably higher”. On 19 October a Comoros flagged refrigerated cargo vessel was attacked near Nigeria’s oil hub, Port Harcourt, and four crewmembers (two Lithuanian and two Ukrainian) were kidnapped by Nigerian pirates after robbing the vessel. 19 sailors were on board. The IMB report for the first nine months of 2015 states 190 incidents of piracy and armed robbery against ships have been “officially counted” around the world.
3. Emissions Sniffing Drones to Launch
Europe is turning to a new tool to catch ship operators skirting pollution limits: emissions-sniffing drones. It is the latest sign of how civilian drones are finding a widening array of commercial uses. The twist in Europe is that it is government bodies that are among those championing the technology. In the U.S., tech companies have been quick to try out the technology. Amazon.com Inc. is testing drones to deliver packages, and Facebook Inc. is aiming to use drones to help provide Internet access. The European Maritime Safety Agency and the European Space Agency are hoping to cooperate in tracking pollution from ships.
4. CMA CGM Slashes Pollution
France-based shipping giant CMA CGM S.A. (CMA CGM) Wednesday said that it has slashed the CO2 emissions from its owned fleet by 50 percent over the past 10 years, citing its "efficient environmental policy sustained by deploying innovative solutions." The company’s announcement comes just days before COP 21 is set to begin in Paris and alongside calls from environmental groups for delegates attending the climate summit to agree that a global emissions cap for shipping should be set. CMA CGM says that on average shipping a container emits about 60 grams of CO2 per kilometre, in comparison 2005 when that could be expected to be 120 grams.
5. Standard Club on Armed Guards
The situation with armed guards and patrol ships in the Gulf of Guinea is complex and according to the Standard Club owners should ensure they seek proper and full advice when consider security options when trading to this region; failing to do so could lead to penalties from local states, including detention and fines. The club recommends owners calling at ports and/or areas subject to the threat of piracy and armed robbery exercise vigilance. They also recommend Best Management Practices 4 in all affected areas, as well as the above-mentioned Interim Guidelines for Owners, Operators and Masters for Protection Against Piracy in the Gulf of Guinea Region.
6. Somali Piracy Set to Return
Experts are warning that high sea piracy is making a comeback in the Indian Ocean along the Somali waters posing a security threat for vessels fishing or plying the east African coast line. Piracy along the Somalia coast had subsided in the last three years mainly due to shipping firms hiring private security details and increased patrols by international warships, but it’s making a comeback as the level of illegal fishing rise along the horn of Africa waters. According to a Reuters report, Somali pirates hijacked an Iranian fishing vessel with 15 crew member on Sunday evening. Other ships plying the route have also reported increased attacks in the past week.
7. El Faro Owner Suffers Again
A cargo ship owned by TOTE, the parent company of the doomed freighter El Faro, lost power and went adrift off the coast of Canada this week. The "MV North Star" was heading from Anchorage, Alaska to Tacoma, Wash., when it lost propulsion two both engines after suffering an "electrical issue" off British Columbia Tuesday morning, The Canadian Press reports. Power has since been restored to the ship, the Canadian Coast Guard reported Wednesday morning, according to Transport Canada. A Canadian government spokesperson confirmed a tug boat is meeting the North Star en route to Tacoma, Wash.
8. Rotterdam Workers Set to Strike
Europe’s largest port may see delays over the next two months after about 850 container workers at the Port of Rotterdam voted to hold a series of 24-hour strikes throughout December and January to protest possible job cuts, Reuters reports. The workers are reported to be hoping that the strike action will help achieve their demand for a guarantee of job security over the next nine years in the face of two new highly automated container terminals that are expected to cause 700 out of 4,000 jobs to be cut from the port’s container in 2017.
9. Buy Out of APL
The proposed acquisition of Singapore’s APL by the French shipping major CMA CGM would be the largest consolidation move in the history of the container shipping industry, based on the size of the fleet operated by the acquired company, according to Alphaliner. The combination of APL’s vessels (0.54 Mteu) with ships of the CMA CGM Group (1.79 Mteu) would create a combined fleet of 2.33 Mteu with an 11.5% global capacity share, based on Alphaliner figures. Neptune Orient Lines (NOL), the parent company of the ocean carrier APL, has confirmed that it entered into an exclusivity agreement with the French shipping line CMA CGM to negotiate a potential acquisition.
10. Fixed Rate Management for Bulkers
NEPA Projects and Investments has developed a fixed rate management concept for dry cargo owners to provide support during the present poor market conditions in the sector. NEPA’s solution provides technical and commercial shipmanagement services at a fixed daily rate, the technical risk being shared with owners as well as commercial profits. NEPA said in a release today it is aiming to attract traditional small owners and also financiers with under-performing shipping assets. “The traditional shipmanagement model leaves the owners open to additional charges for a wide range of technical and crew related expenses." This new approach seeks to move the model on.
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