Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 10/02/2016
1. Maersk Burned by Oil Drops
The eagerly anticipated Maersk Group results out this morning suggest shipping and especially offshore is in for a very harsh 2016. The Danish giant warned the outlook for this year is likely to be “significantly below” the 2015 results. Maersk Oil, Maersk Drilling and Maersk Supply Service are expected to be the worst performers across the group. The group managed a net profit of $925m for 2015, dramatically down from the $5.2bn reported in 2014. “Maersk Group was severely impacted by a widening supply-demand gap across most of our businesses, leading to significant oil price and freight rate reductions,” the company said.
2. Satellite Back-Up Fails
A British-led initiative to create a back-up to satellite navigation systems for ships has been pulled after failing to garner interest from other European countries, despite its proponents pointing to the growing risk of disasters at sea. Vessels increasingly rely on devices that employ satellite signals to find a location or keep exact time, including the Global Positioning System (GPS). Paper charts are used less frequently due to a loss of traditional skills among seafarers. Experts say GPS is vulnerable to signal loss from solar weather effects or radio and satellite interference or deliberate jamming, which South Korea experienced from North Korea.
3. Flagging Success and Concerns
The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has published its Shipping Industry Flag State Performance Table for 2015/2016 pointing to the positive performance of open registries (sometimes referred to as flags of convenience.) The Table provides an annual overview of the performance of the world’s ship registers against a number of criteria, using data available in the public domain. ICS is keen to draw attention to the impressive number of positive indicators that are now being achieved by those flag states which are used by the vast majority of ship operators.
4. IMO Global Warming Warning
Limiting global warming to 1.5/2°c will be “impossible” unless the IMO introduces measures to curb ship emissions, NGOs Transport & Environment (T&E) and Seas At Risk (SAR) have reiterated. Highlighting the Brussels meeting of new International Maritime Organization secretary-general and EU Commissioners today, T&E and SAR said shipping could be responsible for 17% of global CO2 emissions in 2050, citing an EU study. “We welcome the new IMO secretary-general, who is coming to office at a key moment following the Paris agreement,” said shipping officer at T&E Sotiris Raptis.
5. Eagle Bulk Makes Payment
Eagle Bulk has made the quarterly loan repayment it missed in January and has extended its forbearance and standstill agreement with its creditors by a further two weeks while it tries to resolve its liquidity problems. The NASDAQ-listed company repaid $3,906,250 to its lenders as a condition of amending the forebearance agreement for a second time. The installment was originally due on January 15, but Eagle Bulk was unable to make the repayment after being found to be in breach of its loan facility with ABN AMRO Capital USA and a consortium of other lenders.
6. Cargo Ferry Grounds off Greece
The cargo ferry Alios grounded off Kea island, Greece. The accident happened in moderate weather and normal winds, caused by human mistake. The vessel grounded in southern part of the island in sandy shallow during a voyage from Lavrio, Greece to Limassol, Cyprus. The Ro-Ro cargo ship Alios hardly stuck and was not able to refloat by own power. According to preliminary assessment from the crew, there were no damages of the hull and no water ingress. There were no injured seamen during the accident with cargo ship Alios. The local authorities started investigation for the root cause of the grounding.
7. North Korean Sanctions Buster
A U.N.-blacklisted North Korean shipping company continues to evade sanctions through its use of foreign-flagged ships, name changes and other means of obfuscation, according to a new report by United Nations monitors. The U.N. Security Council’s Panel of Experts on North Korea, which monitors implementation of sanctions on Pyongyang, also said the reclusive communist nation has continued to export ballistic-missile technology to the Middle East and ship arms and materiel to Africa in violation of U.N. restrictions. Nine of 15 vessels operated by OMM are currently in service in spite of OMM’s blacklisting.
8. Security Future Maritime Jobs
Announcing the theme Maritime Jobs for Future Generations, Seafarers UK has this week launched its Seafarers Awareness Week 2016 campaign, with the focus on promoting maritime career opportunities, both at sea and ashore. Seafarers Awareness Week 2016 takes place from June 20 to 26 throughout the UK. It aims to build on the success of last year’s awareness-raising campaign, which saw more than one hundred businesses and organisations support the annual initiative. Seafarers Awareness Week provides a platform for events and activities around the UK, combining a host of local media opportunities, with industry and individuals.
9. Superyachts and Migrant Fears
There has been much coverage in the media on what to do should your superyacht encounter migrants, but one interesting point that came up in a recent discussion was this: how would an owner feel about his or her yacht being part of a migrant rescue? One question is, despite an owner’s philanthropic efforts, how many would be happy for the name of their superyacht to appear on the front page, as it most likely the case? A superyacht captain recently speaking to The Crew Report about a past experience when he was working in the commercial sector, highlighted how the name of a vessel appearing in the media could be problematic. “
10. Risk Maps and Security Threats
With the click of a button, ship owners and managers can now view what security threats a country poses thanks to a new live interactive map. Security and risk mapping system RiskMap provides a new and unique way of viewing and categorising up-to-the-minute security threats from around the world. RiskMap automatically analyses thousands of news articles every day, by assessing the threat posed, classifying the risk and identifying the location. It automatically summarises articles of interest by selecting the most important information that is relevant to the event, processing large amounts of data quickly and efficiently.
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions www.seacurus.com
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