Top Ten Maritime News Stories 02/09/2016

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 02/09/2016

1. Hanjin Ships Detained
About 10 vessels operated by Hanjin Shipping have been effectively "seized" at China ports by charterers, port authorities and others as of Wednesday, a South Korean trade association said on Thursday. Some of the ships were not being allowed to leave Chinese ports, while others, which are currently at sea nearby, were expected to be seized, the association said. Meanwhile, Hyundai Merchant Marine Co Ltd will deploy 13 or more of its ships to Hanjin Shipping’s two exclusive routes before Sept. 7 – offering a “reasonable” shipping rate to ease the burden of increases in freight costs for South Korean firms.
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2. Christmas is Cancelled
The Hanjin Shipping downward spiral continues – not just with ships effectively "seized" – some have been left in limbo. There are reports of its ships stranded outside ports in Southern California and around the world. The shipping giant’s stunning shutdown snarled its entire supply chain, from retailers waiting for Christmas goods to exporters trying to get shipments to Asia. Hanjin, which also owns a majority stake in the Port of Long Beach’s largest terminal, advised freight brokers in some Asian ports Wednesday that it would no longer accept cargo. At least four ships were affected at the ports of Long Beach and Los Angeles.
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3. Five Stars is Freed
The Chinese cargo ship which was arrested and then detained by Australian authorities for more than a month is now free to leave, but has been banned from Australian ports for 12 months. The Five Stars Fujian has been sitting idle in waters near Gladstone, laden with $40 million worth of Australian coal bound for China. The Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) detained the ship on August 12 for not paying its crew wages for 12 months, and having inadequate food for its voyage. The bulk carrier was released after the AMSA received news that outstanding wages had been paid and the vessel had been resupplied.
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4. Disappointed with Debts
Greek owner the Danaos Corporation is “disappointed” about the demise of Hanjin Shipping, which filed for receivership this week, and to which the company has eight containerships on charter. The owner said the eight vessels’ timecharter contracts represent approximately $560m or around 20% of its $2.8bn contracted revenue backlog as of June 30, 2016. Research by Deutsche Bank, revealed Danaos is the shipowner with the greatest exposure to Hanjin. “We are disappointed that the Korean Development Bank has failed to support an important participant in the global containership business,” CEO of Danaos.
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5. Chinese Going Green
Beijing is clamping down further on ship emissions in rulings that could change the shipping industry forever. The Chinese government has come under pressure to act over the dire state of the environment and has already taken sweeping measures against many industries, including shipping with the creation of the nation’s first ECAs. It is now going a step further, issuing its first ever set of national standards to curb harmful emissions from the shipping industry. In the first stage of the new standards, the shipping industry is required to cut emissions of PM10 and PM2.5 by about 70% from the levels in 2016.
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6. Massive Amount of Security Checks
From January to Aug 29, the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) checked almost 20,000 boats and ships in combating piracy in local waters. MMEA director-general, Maritime Admiral Datuk Seri Ahmad Puzi Ab Kahar said inspections and 24-hour patrols were conducted with the focus on areas suspected to be targets of pirates. “Through the checks, the MMEA has been able to detect and prevent unwanted elements, and not just pirate attacks, but also smuggling activities,” he said.
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7. EU to Help Libya Migrant Struggle
EU states may offer vessels to Libya as part of a broader effort against migrant smuggling. An EU source on told reporters in Brussels that Libyans were likely to be patrolling their own territorial waters on the boats before next summer. "I think that some member states will provide some more vessels to the Libyans," he said. Libya is the main staging point along the north African coast for people seeking international protection in the EU. Some 100,000 have left the country, often in overcrowded and unseaworthy boats, since the start of the year.
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8. Closing its Open Register
The days of cocaine smuggling, illegal fishing and human trafficking using ships bearing the Cambodian flag appear to have come to an end as government officials claim that, as of today, all foreign-owned ships operating through Cambodia’s “flag of convenience” scheme must be stripped of their designation, and the world’s ports should no longer grant them access. Following a 2015 decision to close down the business loophole, which allows foreign-owned merchant ships to avoid restrictions and financial charges in their home countries, foreign-owned ships will no longer be allowed to fly the Cambodian flag.
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9. Iran Comes in from Cold
The Islamic Republic of Iran Shipping Lines (IRISL) and Norway’s Skuld P&I marine insurance company have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) relating to shipping insurance, Iranian news agencies have reported. Based on the MOU, the Norwegian company will provide IRISL with various kinds of maritime insurance covers and handle customer enquiries and complaints relating to these insurance services. Skuld will also cooperate with IRISL on staff training and upgrading knowledge and capabilities of the Iranian insurance specialists.
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10. Giving Attention to Human Element
On a technological behemoth like a ship, in many cases the crew, or "human element" get little attention when planning the design and operations – a mistake, as statistics show: most accidents at sea can be traced back to human error. The CyClaDes project brought the industry together and showed how more consideration can be given to the human operators and their contexts in the shipbuilding and operational process. In the EU-sponsored CyClaDes (Crew-Centered Design and Operation of Ships and Ship Systems) project the goal is to better integrate the "human factor" in the development and the life cycle of a ship
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Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions  www.seacurus.com

 

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