Top Ten Maritime News Stories 28/10/2016

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 28/10/2016

1. Company Claims Business As Usual
Ship manager Vallianz Holdings has responded to disturbing reports that it had abandoned crew aboard three vessels by stating that it has begun the process of paying workers their wages due. The firm also assured investors that it is "business as usual". Vallianz made the statement to the Singapore Exchange (SGX) after reports the crew of the "Swiber Explorer" had been left to fend for themselves off Dubai since June. Vallianz told the SGX that it has transferred the salaries for the crew of the Explorer and the Navigator until August. They should receive payments in their accounts within two days.
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2. Globalisation Here to Stay
The Panama Canal Authority’s chief executive is concerned about anti-trade rhetoric taking center stage in the U.S. election campaign, but he believes American consumers will step up their shopping after the result and boost shipping cargo volumes across the isthmus by a double-digit percentage. “Talk of trade barriers and protectionism are a big part of the U.S. campaign, but globalization is here to stay and once the dust settles, we expect consumers will start buying again, boosting demand,” Jorge L. Quijano said on the sidelines of the Danish Maritime Forum conference.
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3. Death on the Tyne
A stranded ship where a crewman met his death has been in dock for investigations into Thursday’s tragedy to be carried out. Onlookers were quick to notice the absence of the Brasschaat, one of three bulk carriers that have been a regular sight off the Tynemouth coast for months. The ship was moved to Northumbrian Quay, in North Shields, after one of the crew on board fell from a height onto deck and sustained fatal injuries. It is expected to return to its usual position offshore. The dead man, a 29-year-old Ukrainian was a member of the team drafted in to take care of the ships after their owner went bankrupt.
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4. Pirated Crew Found Safe
Authorities located yesterday the 10 crewmembers and tug and barge that were the latest victims of piracy in Southeast Asia. The tug "Ever Ocean Silk" and the oil barge "Ever Giant" were attacked on Tuesday evening 60 nautical miles off Bintulu port in northern Borneo, Malaysia.. Pirates robbed the crew and took equipment from the the tug. The crew were found yesterday afternoon around 30 nautical miles from the same Malaysian port. The barge was carrying 2,500 tons of palm oil on an intra-Malaysian route – none of the cargo was stolen.
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5. Pirates Will Plead Guilty
Over 100 alleged Somali pirates willing to plead guilty have said they will not cross examine witnesses nor appeal their sentence unless they are given the death penalty. All except one of the 119 Somali pirates — who have been booked under Unlawful Activities Prevention Act and other charges including about 50 charged for murder — want to voluntarily accept guilt. In 2011, the Somali nationals were apprehended by the Coast Guard and the Indian Navy off the Lakshwadeep coast. The trial is set to end soon, as there are only five witnesses yet to be examined.
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6. Search for Lost Sailor
The US Navy has joined in the search for a 50-year-old Chinese man missing from his boat about 600 miles northwest of Hawaii. A Navy MH-60 helicopter flew over the Qingdao China, a super trimaran, but was unable to hail Guo Chuan, the Coast Guard said in a statement. Guo set sail from San Francisco on Oct. 18 in an attempt to set a solo, non-stop trans-Pacific world record by reaching Shanghai within 20 days, according to his web site, guochuanracing.com. The boat was named after his hometown of Qingdao, a port city in China.
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7. Internet for Safety
We’ve all heard about shipowners and managers getting internet for seafarers for crew welfare reasons, but apparently some are also doing it for reasons of safety. Stefan Matias Nygard, general manager portfolio management for Wartsila, said one shipowner had indeed decided to invest in crew internet for reasons of safety. The issue was that as vessels came into port and the crew could get local 4G connections on their phones they would all start to connect to social media and internet sites while the ship was coming into dock. “They had one hand on their phones and one hand using their phones", so they invested.
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8. Tail to Wag Regulatory Dog
In a debate on regulation, Navios group IT director Katerina Raptaki recently stated that regulators should listen to shipowners before forcing new rules on them. Dona Marine Co technical operations superintendent Ian Kershaw said there is ample opportunity for shipowners to put their views forward to IMO, which sets the majority of maritime regulations. “It is because shipowners are unwilling to adopt, or invest, in new ideas that regulation has to be forced upon them,” he commented. He added on a LinkedIn comment that IMO should discuss the practicalities of implementation with seafarers instead.
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9. Danes in the Doldrums
The Danish shipping industry seems to be marooned in the midst of some fairly serious doldrums at the moment. According to projections by the Danish Shipowners’ Association (DSA), the total exports accumulated by shipping this year are expected to land at 160 billion kroner. That’s a 20 percent decrease compared to last year and the biggest fall since it tumbled by 28 percent during the financial crisis in 2009. “The change for the global maritime industry has been significant, and we are challenged on several fronts,” said Anne H Steffensen, the head of DSA.
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10. Preparing for Command
North P&I Club has published detailed advice for its shipowner members on how ensure a smooth and successful promotion of their chief mates to the all-important role of master. The advice appears in the latest issue of the Club’s loss prevention newsletter Signals, which is published today (25 October 2016).
Deputy loss prevention director Colin Gillespie says, ‘Once a shipowner has selected one or more chief officers for promotion to captain, a comprehensive programme of training and coaching should be put in place to ensure they are fully prepared to assume command.
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Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions  www.seacurus.com

 

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