Top Ten Maritime News Stories 06/12/2016

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 06/12/2016

1. Heading Off Catastrophic Failure
In the wake of the Hanjin bankruptcy, THE Alliance has devised a “catastrophic instrument” funding mechanism, to be used if one of its member lines were to fail. The proposals would allow fellow alliance lines to “take other actions to facilitate the movement or cargo carried by the affected party to the intended port of discharge or other locations”. Other clauses give the members the right to deal directly with shipowners of chartered-in ships and/or other carriers providing slot charters to the bankrupt partner.
2. V Ships Sold
Advent International (“Advent”) has announced that it has agreed to acquire a majority ownership interest in V.Group Ltd. (“V.Group”), the world’s leading marine and offshore vessel management and support services provider, from OMERS Private Equity (“OPE”). OPE will reinvest in V.Group, working with Advent and the management team to support the continued growth and development of the business. V.Group’s management team will retain a minority stake in the company. The value of the transaction was not disclosed.
3. ICS Welcomes Piracy Extention
The International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) has welcomed the extension of EUNAVFOR Operation Atalanta, following a decision by the EU Council, which will continue to see military forces deployed for counter piracy operations in the Western Indian Ocean until December 2018. ICS Secretary General, Peter Hinchliffe said: “The presence of military forces is an essential component of the package of government actions that has helped to suppress the activities of Somali pirates, in support of the protective measures that continue to be taken by the shipping industry.
4. US Ballast Type Approval
The U.S. Coast Guard issued the first U.S. type-approval certificate for a ballast water management system. The Coast Guard Marine Safety Center issued the certificate to Optimarin after its application for U.S. type approval was reviewed and determined to meet the requirements of the Coast Guard’s type approval requirements contained in 46 C.F.R. § 162.060. “While this is a significant milestone, it is the first of multiple system approvals that are needed to mitigate the threat of harmful aquatic invasive species,” said Rear Adm. Paul Thomas, assistant commandant for prevention policy.
5. Trump Effect on Trade
U.S. President-elect Donald Trump’s future policy stance poses “the single largest risk to the global economy,” according to a client survey by Oxford Economics Ltd. More than half of respondents said that the probability of a sharp slowdown has increased over the past three months, according to the firm’s Nov. 14-21 survey on global risk perceptions conducted among about 180 clients and contacts. Twenty-seven percent said a potential trade war triggered by Trump was the top risk to the global economy over the next two years, followed by 23 percent who said a more severe downturn in the Chinese economy was the top risk.
6. Ship Channel Opens
The Houston Ship Channel, which links the busiest U.S. petrochemical port to the Gulf of Mexico, reopened on Monday afternoon after a fire-damaged ship blocking the waterway was moved to a berth, the U.S. Coast Guard said. The Channel was blocked on Monday afternoon by the tanker "Jo Kiri". The tanker was headed north along the waterway and near Eagle Point when it reported smoke in the engine room, the Coast Guard said. The fire was out as of 1450 CST (2050 GMT), and the ship was waiting to be towed to the nearest berth. There was no estimate of when the ship would be moved.
7. Security Vessels For Auction
Following a recent default, two advanced specification security vessels will be sold via sealed tender closing on 14 December 2016. The two ships offer bullet proof glass, sniper plates on deck, a vault to accommodate 15 rifles and cabin arrangements for a crew of 22. They don’t lack interior luxuries either, as they are finished off with Bosch appliances and Samsung air-conditioning throughout. The vessels will be sold in Cape Town. The sale closes on 14 December at 12h00 South African time.
8. Crew Rescued at Sea
Nineteen crew members rescued from a Greek bulk carrier, which flooded following a fire at sea, are to arrive in Cape Town harbour on Monday. A fire broke out in the engine room of the Antaios, owned by the Greek shipping company Amalthia Marine Inc, while it was in the mid-Atlantic, some 860 nautical miles west of Cape Town, over the weekend. The carrier was sailing from Argentina to Saudi Arabia. "The fire caused some damage which led to flooding in the engine room. When the flooding became uncontrollable, the captain decided to make a distress call and order the crew to abandon ship," Samsa said in a statement.
9. Allision with Lock Gate
The general cargo ship Daan allided with the Northern Lock’s gate in Brunbuettel at Kiel Canal. The vessel was proceeding en route to St Malo, but rammed the gate after engine failure. Following the collision, the cargo ship suffered damaged in the bow, including torn bulwark. The Northern Lock’s gate suffered visible damages as well. The accident was reported to the local authorities and at the scene were dispatched tug, which towed the general cargo ship Daan to inner Brunsbuettel harbor, where was docked for repair and safety inspection. Fortunately, during the accident there were no injured people and no water pollution.
10. Greek Seafarers Strike
Greek ports ground to halt with scores of vessels tied up in port or at anchor as Greek seafarers extended a 48-hour strike on all types of vessels for a second 48 hours to 6 December in protest of the pending abolition of their long standing special tax status and other planned changes to labour and insurance rights, pensions and retirement ages. Calling the extension of the strike, the Panhellenic Seamens Federation (PNO) warned there is a chance the action will be extended by its 13-member unions. The PNO has already announced seafarers will participate in the nationwide private sector’s 24-hour strike, on 8 December.

Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions


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