Top Ten Maritime News Stories 11/10/2016

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 11/10/2016

1. More Yemen Attacks
The U.S. military launched cruise missile strikes on Thursday to knock out three coastal radar sites in areas of Yemen controlled by Iran-aligned Houthi forces, retaliating after failed missile attacks this week on a U.S. Navy destroyer, U.S. officials said. The strikes, authorized by President Barack Obama, represent Washington’s first direct military action against suspected Houthi-controlled targets in Yemen’s conflict. Still, the Pentagon appeared to stress the limited nature of the strikes, which were aimed at radar that enabled the launch of at least three missiles against the U.S. Navy destroyer "USS Mason" since Sunday.
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2. Hanjin Arrests Begin
World Fuel Services (WFS) has arrested a Hanjin Shipping (Hanjin) vessel in Korea, following a court decision that appears to have bypassed the troubled company’s bankruptcy protection. The vessel in question is the "Hanjin Xiamen", which is currently docked in Changwon, with data from VesselsValue.com indicating the 6,655 teu capacity 2007-built Post Panamax box ship is worth $14.93 million. WFS argued that the vessel was not technically "owned" by Hanjin and therefore could not be considered an asset, rather, the vessel was only "beneficially owned" by them and registered to a special purpose entity established in Panama.
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3. More Responsibility Less Authority
The position of the Ship Master, apparently enshrined in centuries of law, custom and practice, is showing evidence of strain in the light of 21st century ship operation and management. The Master’s traditional authority is widely perceived as being diminished while responsibility is being increased, frequently in matters over which he has little or no control. Is the role of the Master under attack? How has his authority and responsibilities been affected in an age of instant communication between ship and shore, and a growing volume of laws and regulations affecting the way the Master runs his ship?
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4. Urgent Somali Action Needed
The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) has urged liners navigating through the Somali coast to continue with counter piracy measures despite a reduction of incidents. Secretary-general Kitack Lim called on merchant shipping stakeholders to remain vigilant and take on protective measures against possible attacks in the Gulf of Aden and the western Indian Ocean area. An international military alliance, including the EU Naval Force currently operates off the coast of Somalia to counter the crime. The force has extended their Operation Atlanta counter-piracy mandate to the end of 2018.
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5. Owner Back Border Guards
European shipowners are pleased with the recent launch of the European Border and Coast Guard Agency. ECSA supports the creation of this new Agency allowing efficient European border management as the merchant fleet has in the past years met increasingly demanding security and safety challenges in the Mediterranean Sea. The merchant ships have rescued thousands of people at sea despite great risks for the safety and security of the immigrants on board, crews and ships. "The European Border and Coast Guard Agency will provide a missing link in strengthening Europe’s maritime borders" they said.
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6. Demolition Prices Attractive
In what could prove a positive trend for the future tonnage supply, prices for ships headed for demolition in the broader Southeast Asia region have kept their firming up for yet another week. In its latest weekly report, the world’s leading buyer of these types of assets, GMS, noted that “during a week in which over $20/LDT was shaved off Indian steel plate prices, some of the jittered sentiment returned to cash buyer offerings as levels on available units started to be scaled back or even being withdrawn altogether. This (unsurprisingly) did not cease the number of candidates currently flooding the market.
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7. Environment Committee Sitting
On 24-28 October, the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee (MEPC) is gathering. During that meeting two important issues will be discussed: The further policy measures for the shipping sector in terms of CO2 reduction and thus climate change, and the postponement or not of the global 0,5% sulphur cap, actually foreseen in 2020. Some see this meeting is a milestone as the shipping sector must contribute to achieving the global climate change reduction target.
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8. Official Piracy Figure Doubt
A Togo official has criticised maritime insurance companies for inaccurate statistics on piracy, which include many false alarms. During an expert debate on the fight against piracy and trafficking, Rear Admiral Fogan Adegnon, Togo’s general director of the Port of Lome, said "statistical data on maritime piracy in the Gulf of Guinea are still to be checked". "It is true that piracy acts are decreasing in the Gulf of Guinea," Adegnon said. Many of the figures on piracy are false alarms as "laid-up vessels made their vicinity fish-rich", which attracted local fishermen who are mistaken as pirates.
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9. Largest Gas Bunker Deal
LNG supplier Bomin Linde LNG has secured the largest LNG bunker supply vessel of its kind to date with a capacity of 7,500 cubic meters (two million gallons). Commissioning of the vessel is scheduled for late 2018, and Bomin Linde LNG will be using it to supply marine customers and small-scale LNG terminals along the Baltic Sea coast. The vessel will feature azimuth thrusters and pump jets to ensure high maneuverability. Offshore bunkering will be possible using DP2 technology. Frequency-driven pumps with high flow rates will allow for fast LNG transfer to client vessels with short-term layovers at port.
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10. Fighting to Keep Seafarers
UK’s National Union of Rail, Maritime and Transport Workers (RMT) has launched a campaign to fight the decline in the number of seafarers in the country. The campaign, "SOS 2020", is said to be a “clarion call” for the country’s government and industry to respond to the maritime skills crisis with coordinated actions that will increase the number of UK seafarers in training and employment. In the early 1980s, there were around 30,000 Ratings, specialist maritime staff with a variety of responsibilities, working at sea in the UK merchant navy. By June 2015, there were 8,830 Ratings out of a total UK seafarer workforce of 23,380.
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Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions  www.seacurus.com

 

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