Top Ten Maritime News Stories 16/06/2016

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 16/06/2016

1. Abu Sayyaf Ransoms Raised
It has emerged that families of four kidnapped Malaysian seafarers recently freed by the Abu Sayyaf militant group in the southern Philippines raised RM12m ($2.93m) and handed the sum to police in Sabah. “All proceeds from the donation raised were handed over to the police,” one of the family members told Malaysian media on speculation that a ransom had been paid to get the crew freed after 69 days in captivity. Abu Sayyaf has been very active in and around the Sulu Sea in recent months, targeting mainly tugs and barges, and demanding ransom for captured crews.
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2. Offshore Slave Vessel Detained
An offshore supply ship has been detained at a UK port by Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) officers for an alleged failure to pay seafarers’ wages. The Mumbai-registered "MV Malaviya Seven" was detained in Aberdeen on Wednesday amid claims by the RMT union that 15 Indian crew members have not been paid for nearly two months, with some having been without pay for longer. The union claimed the incident was an example of "modern-day slavery" in the North Sea. An MCA spokeswoman said the ship will be detained until the wages are paid. BP confirmed it had chartered the vessel from June 1 until Wednesday.
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3. Tricky Time For Class
By his own admission Remi Eriksen was handed the top job at classification society DNV GL at a tricky time. Having joined DNV in 1993, Eriksen assumed the role of group president and ceo at the merged DNV GL in August last year, a time when much of the shipping and offshore were (and still are) in turmoil with obvious ramifications for anyone involved in class. “Times are tough,” Eriksen concedes, especially in oil and gas. Eriksen reckons 2016 is the toughest year in 30 years for the company and, more worryingly, “2017 will be tougher.” It will not be until 2019 or even 2020 that offshore recovers, Eriksen predicts.
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4. Time to Think On Drones
Experts have been issuing advice for shipowners thinking of using drones at sea after a ship was detained for using a drone while transiting the Suez Canal. In the past security companies have pitched the idea of using drones against pirates, and there are some technology companies using them for ship inspections. However, some believe that if the drone hits another ship, it could technically fall under an act of piracy. While drones use RF (radio frequency) to communicate, the ship is emitting far stronger RF signals than the drone controller’s device, and most likely the drone will just fly away, uncontrolled.
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5. Casino Crew Finally Win
After eight months stuck on a sweltering casino ship abandoned in the middle of Hong Kong’s harbor, the first of the crew of the New Imperial Star are headed home. “So happy,” said Saw Htoo Ko Ko, 22, throwing his arms in the air in exuberance as he picked up his bright red suitcase at the Tsim Sha Tsui pier on Wednesday (June 15), the city’s famed skyline gleaming in the background. The Burmese sailor and 25 of his fellow service crew are heading home this week, 18 to Burma and eight to China. “They’ve suffered for six to eight months with no wages. They want to go home,” said The ITF.
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6. Dutch Ship Migrant Rescue
A Dutch marine ship in the EU border agency Frontex rescued nearly 200 migrants on a sinking ship in the Mediterranean, the Defence Ministry said on Wednesday. Among those onboard were 16 children and two pregnant women, the ministry said in a statement. The Dutch responded to a distress signal from the vessel, which was on the verge of capsizing. It was a week into a crossing from Egypt to Sicily. The migrants were given food, water and medical care, it said. The Netherlands has contributed a ship, aircraft and marines to Frontex, which is responding to an unprecedented number of migrants.
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7. Who are The Niger Avengers
The Niger Delta Avengers (NDA) are Nigeria’s “new” Niger Delta militancy phenomenon. They have issued challenges to the Nigerian government, international oil companies, and the military. Within a span of less than 3 months they are believed to be primarily responsible for reducing Nigeria’s oil production from a (theoretical) 2.2m barrels per day to around 1.4m barrels per day by the end of May 2016. They have mainly targeted Nigerian state and international oil companies’ pipeline infrastructure with explosives attacks. The spectre of their involvement in maritime piracy and kidnappings has been raised as well.
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8. Seafarers Body Found
The body of a ship crew that was reported missing Tuesday midnight was found early yesterday morning around 10 meters from the Polambato Port in Bogo City, northern Cebu. The Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) Cebu identified the fatality as Christopher Sixto of Batangas, an apprentice of "MV Maria Natasha". Based on the report from PCG Cebu, the Masbate-bound ship was trying to release the ropes used for anchorage when it got tangled. Sixto tried to fix it but one of the ropes accidentally hit one of the engines. The rope was then cut, and it hit Sixto who fell on the water.
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9. Oil and Gas Set to Struggle
A new study published Wednesday by consultants Deloitte finds that the oil and gas industry will need to make a minimum E&P investment of three trillion dollars over 2016-2020 just to sustain output and reserves at the present level – and that the industry may not have enough cash flow to cover these capital expenditure needs, repay its debts and make dividend payouts all at the same time. Deloitte foresees oil and gas companies resolving this funding tension through cuts in capex, leading to a trillion-dollar investment shortfall by the end of the decade.
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10. IMO Seafarers Address Video
IMO Secretary General Kitack Lim’s Day of the Seafarer 2016 video message is now online. This year, IMO’s Day of the Seafarer campaign wants to celebrate seafarers and let the world know how and why seafarers are indispensable to everyone. The campaign theme this year is: "At Sea For All". The theme has a clear link with the 2016 World Maritime Day theme, "Shipping: indispensable to the world," emphasising that seafarers serve at sea not just for the shipping industry or for their own career purposes but for all. The IMO asks people everywhere to show their appreciation for seafarers keeping the world in motion.
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Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions  www.seacurus.com

 

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