Top Ten Maritime News Stories 02/03/2016

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 02/03/2016


1. Security Programme Breached

BIMCO and The Standard Club issued a warning regarding an alleged security breach in the Maritime Trade Information Sharing Center, Gulf of Guinea (MTISC-GoG), potentially resulting in the release of ships’ data to pirates. The breach has not been officially confirmed, the Standard Club said, but BIMCO has recommended that vessels entering the area should “limit the provision of any information which would allow vessels to be identified or tracked.” Ships should still sign up for the center’s alerts, BIMCO said, but leaving out position information when entering the area “will allow continuity of shipping security in the region.



2. Pirates Hacking Shipowners

Tech-savvy pirates once breached the servers of a global shipping company to locate the exact vessel and cargo containers they wanted to plunder, according to a new report from Verizon’s cybersecurity team. "They’d board the vessel, locate by bar code specific sought-after crates containing valuables, steal the contents of that crate — and that crate only — and then depart the vessel without further incident," says the report, Verizon’s Data Breach Digest. Verizon released the report detailing 18 case studies among hundreds its RISK Team investigated where pirates had uploaded malicious software allowing them to access data.




3. Rotterdam Port Congestion

The queue of shipps waiting outside Europe’s biggest port and oil trading hub of Rotterdam has grown to the longest in seven years as a global supply glut fills storage capacity. As many as 50 oil tankers, twice as many as normal are waiting outside Rotterdam because storage sites are almost full, the port’s spokesman Tie Schellekens said. An oil trader claimed, "this is a clear sign of the oversupply filling up storage to the brim".



4. Latest Delivery for NYK

A new, advanced 14,000-TEU containership has entered the NYK fleet after being delivered at the Kure shipyard of Japan Marine United Corporation. The vessel, "NYK Blue Jay", employs a hull form that allows for improved cargo-loading efficiency, mainly achieved by minimizing engine-room space. Moreover, the vessel’s main engine is equipped with the world’s first system (patent pending) featuring two power ranges (high and low) that allow for high speed operations, and result in an improved fuel-consumption rate when slow-streaming, resulting in a significant reduction of both carbon dioxide emissions and fuel consumption.




5. Weapons Ship Seized

Local media outlets in Turkey reported that the Greek coast guards detained on Sunday a Turkish ship boarded with weaponry, adding that it heading towards Lebanon. The ship which took off from the Turkish city of Izmir on February 4 was boarded with six containers, two of them hold weapons and munitions. The Greek authorities also arrested all the crew members who are: six Syrians, four Indians and a Lebanese. Turkish officials have not commented on the report. It is worth noting that Turkey has been providing the terrorist groups in Syria with weaponry, inflaming the crisis which erupted in 2011.




6. Fishing Boat Collision

Taiwanese fishing boat has sunk after a collision with container ship "Shin Chun" at approach of Kaohsiung. The accident happened in good visibility and calm sea, probably due to human mistake of the duty officer. After collision the fishing boat capsized with keel remained above the water. All the crew of the fishing vessel are missing, including Taiwanese skipper and one Indonesian seaman. The exact number of the people on board of the fishing vessel is yet unknown. The local authorities organized search and rescue operation for the missing fishing boat crew, engaging the guilty container carrier Shin Chun.



7. New ICS Bridge Guide

The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has published a new edition of the ICS Bridge Procedures Guide, which is available to be used by seafarers and training institutes worldwide.  The new edition has been updated to address the 2010 amendments to the Standards of Training Certification and Watching (STCW) Convention with emphasis added on Bridge Resource Management and the use of new technology such as Electronic Chart Display Information Systems (ECDIS). Peter Hinchliffe, ICS Secretary General, said: “ICS attaches the utmost importance to safe navigation.



8. Pac Basin On Buying Hunt

Despite an $18.5m loss for 2015 – “the weakest year since 1985” for dry bulk rates, Pacific Basin, Hong Kong’s largest shipowner by number of vessels, is in the market for acquisitions. The company, which released its annual results yesterday, noted upcoming buying opportunities. Saying continued low rates, ballast water treatment regulations and routine drydockings will be a “burden that will be unacceptable for some” and is “likely to drive some struggling shipowners to sell assets at record low prices”, presenting the Hong Kong owner with the chance to grow its fleet on the cheap.




9. Eagle Bulk Staves Bankruptcy

Nasdaq-listed supramax specialist Eagle Bulk has extended its forbearance and standstill agreement with its creditors by a further three days. The NASDAQ-listed firm now has until March 4 to provide a solution to the money it owes in loans. This is the fourth time Eagle Bulk has sought to extend the agreement. Eagle Bulk’s lenders, which are being led by ABN AMRO Capital USA, have agreed to waive the minimum liquidity covenant set forth in the loan agreement until March 4 or until the shipping company’s liquidity falls below $12,187,500 or $276,989 per ship.




10. Container Line Consolidation

Consolidation in the container shipping industry is happening for the first time in a decade and will likely continue in 2016, according to a new report from AlixPartners advisory firm. The containerized-ocean-freight industry suffered considerably in 2015 amid continuing financial woes and all signs point to a continuation of this trend into 2016 and beyond. The most-recent forecasts expect global container fleet capacity to grow by 4.6% in 2016, and another 4.7% in 2017, though spot prices for major routes have dropped 21 to 44% from a year ago because of plunging demand, now about half the current growth forecast.




Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions


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S Jones
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