Top Ten Maritime News Stories 21/06/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 21/06/2017
1. Oil and Tanker Glut
Oil traders are resorting to storing more and more oil at sea amid swelling output in the Atlantic region, a sign the market is far from the kind of re-balancing that OPEC would have hoped for when the group set out last year to bring down global stockpiles. The amount of oil stored in tankers reached a 2017 high of 111.9 million barrels earlier this month. Higher volumes of storage in the North Sea, Singapore and Iran account for most of the increase.
2. Resurgence Causes Concern
A resurgence of pirate activity in the Gulf of Aden and northwest Indian Ocean Region has raised concerns for the shipping industry, military authorities, UN bodies, insurers and regional bodies. An expert has said that reduction in naval assets, the withdrawal of NATO from anti-piracy operations and the perception of lesser threat from piracy may have encouraged the hijackings.
3. Floating Container Fears
The Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) has urged fishermen who sighted any food-laden container from the KM Avatar vessel, which sank in the Strait of Melaka on June 14, to immediately alert the agency. Fishermen who towed the containers to the jetty were not allowed to open or take possession of the goods found in the containers. However, fishermen are being rewarded for any boxes they return.
4. Hurricane Season Blowing Hard
The Atlantic hurricane season is less than three weeks old yet it’s already threatening the energy-rich Gulf of Mexico coastline with flooding rains and sparking tropical storm warnings in Venezuela. Tropical systems in the Gulf of Mexico often grab the notice of energy traders because the Texas and Louisiana coastline is home to offshore rigs and platforms accounting for about 17 percent of U.S. crude oil output and 4.1 percent of natural gas production.
5. Shipowners Urged to go Digital
Ship owners’ and transport workers’ associations have in a statement to the EU stressed ship owners are better served by smart digital solutions to decrease the administrative burden they face. It was said at the event that the shipping industry structure means it doesn’t compete in a single market and “remains hampered by endless paperwork”.
6. Shortage of Chill Boxes
Shortage of refrigerated containers is causing a build up of fruit and other perishable products at Brazilian ports according to a report in ShippingWatch. It says carriers including Maersk, MSC and Hamburg Süd have relocated containers other ports in the region where rates are higher. The most severe shortage is in the states of Rio Grande do Sul and Santa Catarina, home to some of the country’s biggest fruit producers.
7. Massive Port Deal Signed
Abu Dhabi Ports has signed a 35-year concession to develop and manage the Port of Fujairah, taking over from DP World, whose contract expired at the UAE port a couple of months ago. Abu Dhabi Ports will dredge to get berths at Sharjah down to 16.5 m alongside. It will also add another 1 km of quayside and 300,000 sq m of extra storage yard space. Port of Fujairah’s capacity is expected to reach 1m teu and 700,000 tonnes of general cargo by 2030.
8. Stevedore Dispute Spills Over
A long simmering dispute at the Port of Gothenburg is reaching boiling point with APM Terminals moving to axe 160 staff at its Swedish concession, according to local newspaper Göteborgs-Posten. Negotiations will begin next week, according to the trade union, Hammerbetarförbundet. The union and APM Terminals have been at loggerheads for the past 18 months, resulting in massive service disruption with many liners choosing to cut calls to Sweden’s top port.
9. Forget Europe, Remember the Sea
Commodore Barry Bryant, Director General of Seafarers UK, has been stressing the importance of Seafarers Awareness Week and what the sea means to the UK. He said, ‘As so often in our history when facing political and international pressures, our relationship with the sea provides the strong and enduring stage from which our island and its people can make their mark, whether in trade, defence or diplomacy." 
10. Huge Shipping Fund Ready
J.P. Morgan Asset Management has closed its Global Maritime Investment Fund II with $480m in capital commitments from a broad range of international institutional investors, including pension plans, insurance companies, and endowment and health care entities. The fund is one of the largest dedicated shipping funds. It seeks to invest in modern vessels operating in shipping sub-sectors that are experiencing substantial distress.

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


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S Jones
Seacurus Ltd


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