Top Ten Maritime News Stories 06/01/2016

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 06/01/2016

1. Japanese Overtake Korean Builders
For the first time since the dawn of the new millennium Japanese yards have overtaken their Korean rivals in terms of orderbook and market share. According to Clarkson Research data released yesterday, the shipbuilding orderbook held by Korean shipyards stood at 19.92m cgt (473 units) as of the end of December 2016, while Japanese shipyards had an orderbook of 20.96m cgt (835). China remains out on top. During their heyday in 2008, Korean shipbuilders had an order backlog 30m cgt bigger than their Japanese counterparts. This is also the first time since 2003 that Korea’s order backlog has fallen below 20m cgt.
2. Sunken Maersk Ships Found
A search team has located the wrecks of two Maersk Supply Service vessels which sank during a tow to a Turkish scrapyard late last month. The vessels are believed to be leaking some pollutants into the environment. The company has been given until the end of the month to report back on a plan for the vessels.
French officials said Wednesday that the hulls of the former Maersk Searcher and Maersk Shipper were located near the area where they sank on December 22 off the island of Sein. Maersk Supply Service has been ordered to carry out an investigation of the two wrecks to determine the condition of the vessels.
3. High Costs, Low Rebound
Shipowners around the world are faced with increasing costs, which could offset any potential rebound of freight rates over the course of the next year or so, as a series of new regulations are bound to necessitate new investments in the existing fleet. First off, the entry into force of the Ballast Water Management Convention means that by this coming September (a deadline seen as unrealistic by most shipping executives) all vessels will have to be fitted with some sort of BWM system, preferably approved by the US Coast Guard as well, otherwise the ship won’t be able to navigate in any US port.
4. Box Fleet Set to Grow
A report forecasts the global container fleet market to grow at a CAGR of 3.19% during the period 2017-2021. The report says key vendors in the market are Maersk, CMA CGM & MSC. The report considers freight volume based on the freight volume shipped by the vendors operating in the market making use of the containers. The latest trend gaining momentum in the market is increasing use of fleet management systems to integrate hardware, software, and communication technologies and act as a platform for fleet operators to help in efficient control, tracking, and monitoring of vehicles used for commercial purposes.
5. Major Solent Rescue
A major rescue involving the Lee on the Solent Coastguard rescue helicopter is taking place in the Solent this afternoon. It is understood that the rescue helicopter has been requested to winch off a male from the Korea registered "Glovis Comet". A winch man has been lowered on to the deck of the 55680 ton vessel. It is understood the crew member has been packaged to be medical evacuated from the 32 meter container ship.
6. Maritime Security View Ahead
Maritime security is still a pretty important subject. With our macro specs on, the waters of the South and East China Sea are likely to be where most of the headlines are generated as China continues to assert itself, while established regional players do what they can to try and stop this happening. Expect to see more incidents between the US, China and Japan in the region, a tense atmosphere made all the worse in December when the Chinese Navy thought they should take a closer look at a Slocum Glider being operated by the USNS Impeccable inside the Philippines EEZ. The shadowing of vessels will also continue.

7. Seafarers Fight Tax Man
India’s two sailors unions, National Union of Seafarers of India (NUSI) and Maritime Union of India (MUI), have appealed to the Centre to treat earnings of seafarers in respect of thier overseas salary as not received in India so that they would get some tax relief. In a letter to Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, the associations urged the government to issue a circular in this regard. "The Kolkata Bench of the Income Tax Appellate Tribunal has taken a view that salaries received by foreign going seafarers for services rendered outside India would nevertheless be taxable in India," the unions said in a letter to Jaitley.
8. Collision Owners Put up Bond
Each of the two ship owners involved in a collision at Pasir Gudang will pay a RM1million (US$223,000) bond to clean up the oil spill resulting from the incident. Johor Health and Environment Committee chairman Datuk Ayub Rahmat said the penalty is as per regulations under the Environment Quality Act 1974, which holds both ships responsible for the costs of removing the oil spill. "As assurance that the ship owners will do the cleaning works, under the provision of Section 38 of the Environmental Quality Act 1974, they have each placed a bond to complete the clean-up works and contain the oil spill".
9. Owners Fear Absconding Crew
Taiwanese Police have formed a task force to deal with the issue of illegal foreign workers after ship owners complained about the high absconding rate among their foreign crew. The latest capture of illegal foreign laborers who had absconded from their legal jobs in Taiwan saw 13 men arrested in Yilan , police said.
Police said they carried out a raid after receiving a tip off that some illegal foreign laborers were working on a construction site in Wujie Township. The 13 absconding workers were questioned and later handed over to the National Immigration Agency, according to police.

10. LA Harbour Closed by Crash
Ship traffic was denied access to Los Angeles Harbor earlier this week when US Coast Guard (USCG) closed the harbor entrance after reports of a two-person helicopter crashing near San Pedro, according to the Associated Press. The small helicopter was reported going down by numerous passengers on a cruise ship in the vicinity. USCG shut off access to the harbor and put in place a 1,000-foot safety zone in order to facilitate the search conducted with a response boat and a helicopter of its own. Port Police and a number of area fire departments also helped.
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions


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