Top Ten Maritime News Stories 08/09/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 08/09/2017
1. Hijacked Tanker Rescued
On Thursday morning, the Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency (MMEA) rescued the crew of a hijacked merchant tanker and arrested ten alleged pirates.  On the night of September 6, 13 pirates boarded the Thai product tanker MGT 1 at a location off Pulau Bidong, a small island near Malaysia’s border with Thailand. According to RECAAP, the attackers arrived in two boats and were carrying arms. They forced the crew of the MGT 1 to come alongside a pirate "mother ship" and transfer over about 265,000 gallons of fuel.  The crew activated the vessel’s SSAS silent alarm, and the MMEA responded.

2. Blockchain Pilot Voyage
South Korea’s Hyundai Merchant Marine (HMM) has become the latest containerline to highlight its foray into blockchain. The company revealed today it has completed its first blockchain adopted pilot voyage with the technology specifically used to focus on reefer shipments. A ship went from Busan to Qingdao at the end of August with blockchain technology deployed for reefer shipment bookings to cargo delivery. Combining the blockchain technology with the Internet of Things (IoT) technology was also tested and reviewed through real-time monitoring and managing of the reefer containers on the vessel.
3. Ballast Water Reality Hits
Tomorrow sees the Ballast Water Management (BWM) Convention finally come into force, something that could cost shipping as much as $100bn, according to the chairman of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS). The regulation has been on the cards at the IMO since 2004 and has been plagued by inconsistent adoption from different national authorities. ICS chairman Esben Poulsson said yesterday now was time to smooth out remaining kinks in the impending legislation.

4. Debt Restructuring Begins
Singapore OSV owner Pacific Radiance says it has commenced debt restructuring discussions with its bank lenders. Pacific Radiance indicated in its second quarter results last month that a restructuring would be forthcoming, announcing it had appointed advisers to help review its overall capital structure.
The company and its advisers have now commenced discussions with its lenders, saying it will work towards a consensual restructuring of its borrowings. Pacific Radiance posted a second quarter loss of $8.5m and said it had taken additional measures to rein in costs, include further right-sizing of its fleet.
5. Floating Computer Risks
Today’s vessels and offshore units are constantly becoming more connected, relying on computers and networks to do everything from navigation, power management, and cargo loading to onboard entertainment and communications. With all these interconnected systems and devices reaching out to the internet, ships have essentially become floating computers with all of the associated vulnerabilities. The move toward connected technology has distinct advantages in efficiencies, yet comes with significant risk.
6. Braemar’s New Buy
Braemar Shipping Services continues to diversify its business suite. Best known as a shipbroker, Braemar has today revealed it has secured the conditional acquisition of Naves Corporate Finance to create a new financial division within the group. The deal is costing Braemar an initial €24m, which could rise to €35m should earn-out payment terms and conditions be satisfied. Hamburg-based Naves is led by Mark Kuchenbecker and Axel Siepmann and advises predominantly German clients on financing, restructuring and sale and purchase transactions.
7. IACS Response Vow
Speaking at a press conference in London on Wednesday, the new chairman of the International Association of Classification Societies (IACS), Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen, vowed to make class more responsive to the technology changes sweeping through shipping. Ørbeck-Nilssen, the CEO of DNV GL – Maritime, announced a series of initiatives with modernisation very much at the heart of his IACS tenure. “Our industry is becoming more complex,” he said. Adding, “Digitalisation is changing not only the way the shipping business is being conducted, but the systems themselves.”

8. New MH370 Finds
Australia’s research agency CSIRO is examining new evidence into the fate of Flight MH370 which it believes points to the location of the missing aircraft. Flight MH370 disappeared on March 8, 2014 with 227 passengers and 12 crew on board. Oceanographic research has continued since the underwater search was suspended in January this year. High-resolution images from an Airbus Pleiades 1A satellite showing “probably man-made” objects similar to debris items since found were taken on March 23, 2014, a little more than two weeks after the passenger airline went missing in the Indian Ocean.
9. Freight Rate Plunge
Freight rates for Medium Range tankers have plunged over the past week west of Suez after hitting their highest so far this year on refinery closures in the US Gulf caused by Hurricane Harvey as the tonnage list is set to fill up again. US demand for gasoline imports remains high despite the restart of Texas refineries and the reopening of port infrastructure on the US Gulf Coast, as the trans-Atlantic route out of Europe continues to spur interest. The UK Continent-US Atlantic coast route saw a frenzy to supply the US and those markets normally supplied by the US Gulf, which had in one stroke lost about 18% of its refining capacity.
10. Transition After BREXIT
Shipping and port bosses will warn Theresa May that a two-year transition period after Brexit will not be long enough to ensure “frictionless” trade continues in Dover and other British docks. David Dingle, the chairman of Maritime UK, which represents marine and shipping industries, said he was “very nervous” about the future and concerned the government was putting £16bn worth of business in jeopardy with threats of no Brexit deal. His concerns stemmed, he said, from the reality of developing new customs declarations systems in time to prevent gridlock at ports and their approach roads.

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


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