Top Ten Maritime News Stories 13/09/2016

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 13/09/2016

1. France Braces for Strikes
France is bracing for more strikes at its ports. Workers belonging to the CGT trade union are set to take part in a nationwide strike against labour reforms on Thursday. The same union conducted a series of strikes at ports across France between April and June which brought the nation’s fuel reserves in trouble and saw plenty of panic fuel buying at pumps across the country. The union is demanding that the government ditches proposed labour reforms.
2. Ballast Akin to Double Hulls
IMO’s International Convention for the Control and Management of Ships’ Ballast Water and Sediments (BWMC), will enter into force in 12 months’ time, and will come with serious ramifications. Will the cost of these systems encourage some owners to scrap their vessel? Possibly…London brokers Gibson who said legislation will impact on owners in terms of the expenditure. Gibson noted the impact of both will enhance the prospects for increased scrapping. Once again legislation will have a huge impact of fleet numbers going forward, similar to the impact of the introduction of double hulls in the 1990s.
3. Toll on Crew and Cargoes
As logistics crisis of Hanjin Shipping lengthens, the toll on cargoes and crew on vessels stranded at sea as well as its clients around the world due to delays and possible ruins in their products is getting bigger and bigger. More than 40 vessels of Hanjin Shipping cannot dock in fear of losing the ships and cargoes to creditors. Any shipping delay will be especially detrimental to food freight  because food past the shelf life would have to discarded. While conditions onboard are getting tougher for the crew, some are turning off air conditioning despite the heat to save power.
4. Collapse Domino Effect
The collapse of Hanjin Shipping, could trigger others. Of the biggest 12 shipping companies that have published results for the past quarter, 11 have announced huge losses. Several weaker outfits are teetering on the edge of bankruptcy. In Japan three firms, Mitsui OSK Lines, NYK Line and Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha, look vulnerable. Activist investors are now pressing for them to merge to avoid the same fate as the South Korean line. Even the strongest are suffering. France’s CMA CGM, announced a big first-half loss. Maersk Line will be in the red this year, having lost $107m in the six months to June.
5. Soothing Stress at Sea
Authored by Professor Neil Greenberg, Managing Director of March on Stress and Professor of Defence Mental Health at King’s College London on behalf of Human Rights at Sea, a new publication, “Managing Traumatic Stress – Guidance for Maritime Organizations” aims to provide a top-level guidance to senior management to help improve the mental health of seafarers by providing education and evidence-based approaches within the maritime industry. Better mental health support for maritime not only provides moral benefits, there are also legal and financial benefits too.

6. Benchmarking of Seafarer Salaries
Spinnaker Global’s HR Consulting division has been collecting and analysing salary data for shore-based roles in the global maritime industry. In 2017 they will be launching a new salary surveys for seafarers. This initiative has been driven by demand from members of the Maritime HR Association who already benchmark compensation data for their shore-based roles. HR Consulting also wants to ensure that reliable benchmarking is available for seagoing personnel. Spinnaker Global are currently gathering participants for this new initiative.
7. Singapore Flag Arrest
The Singapore-flagged general cargo ship Han Yi operated by Hanssy Shipping has been arrested a few days ago in the Italian port of Oristano by the local Coast Guard. The arrest was requested by Trieste-based Samer & Co Shipping due to a debt worth €150,000 ($168,000) for a breach of charter contract and consequent bad publicity. “The legal dispute emerged because one and a half years ago we fixed a ship from Hanssy Shipping to transport some cargo but the vessel never called at the port of load,” Enrico Samer, ceo of Samer & Co, stated.
8. Suspected Pirates Extradited
Eight Indonesians suspected of hijacking the Malaysian product tanker "Orkim Harmony" have been extradited to Malaysia by a court in Vietnam, reports say. The suspects have 15 days to appeal the extradition ruling. The eight suspects were arrested by Vietnamese authorities near Tho Chu Island off Vietnam’s southern coast in June last year. They were on a lifeboat and claimed that their fishing vessel sank, but later admitted they had hijacked the tanker. Orkim Harmony was carrying 6,000 tonnes of gasoline worth $5.7m for Petronas, and was en route to Kuantan in Malaysia when communication was lost in June 2015.
9. Many Ships Escorted
Lieutenant Commander of the Iranian Navy Rear Admiral Gholam Reza Khadem Bigham announced that the fleets of the Navy have escorted over 3,500 ships on the high seas across the world in recent years. Rear Admiral Khadem Bigham added that 1,342 of the escorts have been carried out over the past months. He further highlighted the importance of the Navy’s presence in high seas, saying that in addition to large merchant ships, the naval forces provide security for small ships and fishing boats in the face of pirates and inclement weather.
10. Oldendorff Flexes Market Muscle
Shipping power house Oldendorff, one of few German owners active in the secondhand market this year, is said to be helping compatriot owner NSC Schiffahrt to offload four bulkers. Oldendorff is transferring $38m en block for four four bulkers built at two different Chinese yards, Yangfan and Taizhou Catic. The sale marks a change in focus for the diversified German owner NSC Schiffahrt which is nearing a dry bulk market exit if the sales of the 93,000 dwt "Tana Sea" and "Tonda Sea" both built five years and, and the one year younger "Tonic Sea", and her sister "Tango Sea" are finalised.
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions


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