Top Ten Maritime News Stories 12/04/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 12/04/2017

1. Entire Fleet Inspected
Polaris Shipping, the world’s largest VLOC owner, is now carrying out inspections on all its fleet in the wake of the likely sinking of the "Stellar Daisy" and a crack appearing on another 1993-built vessel, "Stellar Unicorn". Eleven days since the "Stellar Daisy" was first reported missing, a multinational coalition of naval and merchant vessels continue to scour the South Atlantic for the giant 266,000 dwt converted VLCC. Just two of the 24-crew have been found alive so far.
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2. Somali Concerns Rise
The recent hijacking of five vessels within a month by Somali pirates has raised lots of concerns in the maritime industry, after almost five years without a major pirate attack in the region. Is there a real threat of piracy returning to the horn of Africa? Professionals in the anti-piracy sector all agree that the risk is certainly there but it’s still to early to call whether we’re seeing a return to the dark, grim days of the start of decade where hundreds of seafarers were taken captive in east Africa. BIMCO, says the tools, personnel and knowledge remain in place and it was only a matter of time before an opportunity arose.
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3. Understated Giant Launched
In typical Maersk fashion, the Danish liner giant welcomed its latest boxship yesterday, which turns out to be the largest container vessel in the world. While Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) from Japan was triumphant in announcing the then record breaking delivery of the 20,179 teu MOL Triumph last month, Maersk, famously cagey over releasing actual ship capacities, took the Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering (DSME) Madrid Maersk with little fanfare. The Madrid Maersk is the first of 11 EEE Mark II class boxships due for delivery and according to Alphaliner it has a capacity of 20,568 teu.
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4. Maersk Wins Buyout Trust
Maersk Line won EU antitrust approval on Monday for its buy out of Hamburg Sud having committed to pull the German company out from five consortia on trade routes to address competition concerns. Hamburg Sud will withdraw from the consortia on trade routes connecting northern Europe to central America, the west coast of South America and the Middle East. The German company will also exit vessel sharing agreements connecting the Mediterranean to the west coast of South America and the east coast of South America.
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5. Insurgents Reach Sea Resort
Five suspected Abu Sayyaf fighters and four Philippine security personnel were killed in a firefight Tuesday on the island of Bohol, a tourist destination north of Mindanao. The incursion by the terrorist organization followed just a few days after warnings from the U.S. embassy regarding "unsubstantiated yet credible information" on an impending threat in Bohol and Cebu. Military and police units encountered a group of ten militants aboard three motorboats in Inabanga, a municipality on the northwest side of the island; in the ensuing firefight, five suspected Abu Sayyaf members, three soldiers and one policeman were killed.
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6. India Cleaning Up Ports
For the first time ever, India has ranked its 12 major ports on cleanliness. The ranking, topped by Haldia, with Vizag second, was based on efforts to address waste and garbage generated by port operation, in offices, township areas and as a result of incoming ships. The assessment methodology included an official interview, direct observation by a team from the Quality Council of India and interaction with stakeholders. The assessment was undertaken during March 2017 after a year of promotion, and almost all ports achieved the benchmark for cleanliness or were well above it.
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7. Europe Speaks on MRV
The European Commission has published its online Frequently Asked Questions on the implementation of the MRV (monitoring, reporting and verification) Shipping Regulation. The regulation requires ships carrying out maritime transport activities to or from European ports to monitor and report information including verified data on their CO2 emissions from January 1, 2018. The MRV Shipping Regulation applies to ships above 5,000 GT, regardless of their flag. For a voyage to be covered by the MRV Regulation at least one of the ports of call shall be E.U. territory.
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8. Trumping the Jones Act
The Trump administration appears to be moving ahead with an Obama administration proposal aimed at reversing long-standing Jones Act exemptions and is not considering weakening its criteria for waivers from the maritime law, a US Customs and Border Protection spokeswoman said. Those waivers "may only be granted if necessary in the interest of national defence," as they traditionally have been, Katrina Skinner, the CBP spokeswoman, said in a statement to S&P Global Platts.
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9. Damen Deal in Rotterdam
Damen Shipyards Group has entered into an agreement with Keppel Offshore & Marine for the acquisition of the Keppel Verolme shipyard in the Rotterdam. With the acquisition of the Verolme shipyard, Damen continues to strengthen its repair and conversion activities within the regional ship repair and conversion market. The Verolme yard has been active in the Botlek area of the Port of Rotterdam since 1957, and the yard now comprises three graving docks, a quay capacity of over 1,800 meters, and approximately 250 employees.
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10. Rickmers Put to the Sword
Rickmers Maritime is being wound-up after failing to agree a financial restructuring. The Singapore-listed shipping trust has failed to reach agreement on a new restructuring proposal with creditors and new investors, after noteholders rejected its previous proposed restructuring in December 2016. As a result of the rejection by SGD100m noteholders a proposed $260m refinancing package did not go ahead. A syndicate of lenders comprising HSH Nordbank and DBS Bank had given Rickmers Trust Management (RMT) until 15 April to present a new restructuring plan.
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Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions  www.seacurus.com

 

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