Top Ten Maritime News Stories 25/08/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 25/08/2017

1. Time for Safety Shakeup
Two shipping collisions near the Singapore Strait in less than a week have caused serious concerns and brought renewed focus on the need for seamless movement of cargo traffic worth billions of dollars annually in the region. “These are one-off accidents but they do point towards the need to be extra cautious,” said a tankers broker in Singapore. A ship calls at Singapore port every two or three minutes, around 130,000 ships a year, so safety is vital.
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2. Spike in Stowaways
West of England P&I Club reports that it has 60 cases involving 220 stowaways in the past 12 months, costing over $1.6 million to resolve. African ports continue to be the major problem areas for stowaways, with Lagos, Nigeria being the most prolific African ports. In recent years the Club has experienced several incidents whereby large numbers of stowaways (10+) have boarded a vessel in Lagos in a single incident. 
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3. Port Deal Shake Up
Sri Lankan president Maithripala Sirisena has dismissed his justice minister, Wijeyadasa Rajapakshe, for opposing a controversial deal for the lease of 70 percent of the port of Hambantota to China Merchants Port Holdings.  Rajapakshe told the media that he was fired for two reasons – to suppress the investigation of a major scandal related to bonds, and to punish him for revealing what he described as the unconstitutionality of the Hambantota deal. 
 
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4. First Mega Box Passage
The 14,855 teu capacity "CMA CGM Theodore Roosevelt" became the first ever ultra large container vessel (ULCV) to transit the Panama Canal yesterday in another example of how the expanded waterway is reshaping global trade.
ULCVs are classed as boxships with more than 14,000 teu capacity. The previous record-sized boxship to transit the canal was the 13,926 teu OOCL France, a ship that in modern shipping parlance is now termed as a neopanamax.
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5. Zodiac Seeing the Future
Heidmar’s Seawolf Tankers VLCC pool has benefited from the return of Eyal Ofer’s Zodiac Maritime as a partner within the pool. Zodiac Maritime is placing newly acquired 2011-built VLCC Blue Nova into the Seawolf pool, having exited the Star Tankers pool in 2003. The latest addition grows the pool size to nine VLCCs, with an average age of nine years. Ex-Pioneer Marine CEO Pankaj Khjanna has taken up a position on the Heidmar board.
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6. Fire Stricken Bulker Towed
Salvors with Resolve Marine have secured a tow line to the stricken bulker Cheshire, which has been drifting unmanned off the Canary Islands for over a week. On August 12-14, the Cheshire’s cargo of 40,000 tonnes of fertilizer overheated and began to emit clouds of fumes, forcing her crew to evacuate by helicopter. Persistent hazardous conditions prevented the salvors from boarding the ship for most of last week. 
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7.  New SOSREP Announced
The U.K. Maritime & Coastguard Agency has appointed a new Secretary of State’s Representative (SOSRep) Maritime Salvage & Intervention to oversee responses to accidents at sea. Les Chapman will work alongside the existing SOSRep Hugh Shaw OBE for several months, to allow a transition period before assuming the role and responsibilities of the SOSRep later on in the year.
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8. Maersk Eggs in one Basket
If you were to choose a core business based on performance over the last decade container shipping would be unlikely to top the list. But that is where AP Moller – Maersk is headed as it its strategy to make Transport and Logistics its core business with its energy related businesses being sold or spun off becomes a reality. The plan went from theory to execution on Monday with the announcement that French oil company Total would be acquiring Maersk Oil.
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9. Box Line Testing Remote Control
Japan’s largest container line plans to test a remote-controlled vessel across the Pacific Ocean in 2019 as it pursues fully autonomous technology that could disrupt the global shipping industry. Nippon Yusen K.K. is considering using a large container ship for the test from Japan to North America and a crew will be on standby for safe operations, Hideyuki Ando, a senior general manager at Monohakobi Technology Institute, said in an interview Wednesday. 
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10. Measuring the Markets
Maersk Tankers has entered into an equity agreement with U.S. hedge fund CargoMetrics, giving it access to analytical models and algorithms to better manage its tanker operations. Maersk Tankers, a unit of shipping group A.P. Moller-Maersk , has invested a “significant” but undisclosed amount in the Boston-based hedge fund, which will give the firm exclusive right to its analytical models, algorithms and capabilities.
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Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions  www.seacurus.com

 

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S Jones
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