Top Ten Maritime News Stories 08/11/2017

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 08/11/2017

1. Giant Move to Gas
The move to LNG as fuel in the maritime sector picks up steam, as CMA CGM announced plans to outfit nine of its new 22,000 TEU containerships with LNG fuelled engines. A trend that started in the United States is spreading to the world, as global container shipping giant CMA CGM announced its intention to outfit its series of new 22,000 TEU containerships with LNG-fuelled engines. The move to ‘clean fuel’ in the maritime sector has been rapid, spurred by new rules from the International Maritime Organization set to enter force in 2020 which drastically reduces the amount of allowable sulphur in marine fuel. 
2. Cyber Woe Dampens Profits
The cyber attack that brought Maersk to its knees in June has dampened full year financial expectations drastically. The Danish conglomerate released its third quarter results today. The group results were split between transport and logistics – comprising its liner, terminals, towage and logistics divisions and its energy business, which it is in the process of selling off. Maersk revealed that in its Transport & Logistics side of the business it now anticipates an underlying full-year profit of around $1bn, where as previously it had been hoping for a figure in excess of $1bn. 
3. Counting the Cost
A documentary movie Sea Blind – The Price of Shipping our Stuff, will premier tomorrow during this week’s UN Climate Change Conference, COP23, in Bonn. The movie, co-directed by Canadian independent wildlife and science documentary producer Sarah Robertson and climate journalist/polar explorer Bernice Notenboom, addresses climate issues brought about by the opening up of Arctic shipping routes in recent years and looks at potential alternatives to heavy fuel oil use in the Arctic region.
4. Eco Bubble Innovation
Inventor Chris Kinman has designed and patented three bubble systems that work in different ways to dramatically reduce the density of water lying directly ahead of a ship. He claims they can reduce fuel consumption on large cargo ships by 25 to 35 percent, at the same time boosting speed by 20 to 30 percent.   The systems are unlike existing bubble lubrication systems, because Kinman’s system focuses on the bow of the ship, from keel to load line, to reduce the mass of water that must be accelerated and pushed to the sides as the ship sails.
5. Venetian Cruise Ban
Italy’s government has moved to ban the largest cruise ships from Venice’s Giudecca Canal, a move that responds to criticism from local residents and from UNESCO, which has warned that it may list the city as a "threatened" site over perceived conservation risks from large vessels.  “We want it to be clear to UNESCO and the whole world that we have a solution,” said Venice mayor Luigi Brugnaro. “This takes into account all the jobs created by the cruise industry, which we absolutely couldn’t afford to lose, and we can start to work seriously on planning cruises.”
6. Piercing The Corporate Veil
Tax avoidance is in focus more than ever with the release of the Paradise Papers, and the majority of containerships are owned in tax havens according to a survey by SeaIntel Maritime Analysis. Shipping, in general, has long favoured registering vessels in countries with favourable tax regimes, and many of these are also considered to be tax havens. Which countries are defined as tax havens varies over time, however, statistically the majority of containerships are owned in what are classed to be tax havens by the report “Tax Havens: International Tax Avoidance and Evasion” by the US Congressional Research Service.
7. Art of Shipowning
The dry bulk shipping arena’s upward trajectory is continuing and as earnings season for Q3 2017 results have continued onward, equity analysts were turning more positive. At Deutsche Bank, Amit Mehrotra and his team expressed a view “that recent dry bulk rate and asset value trends will be sustained into year-end and beyond.” The team pointed to an increasingly positive view of Star Bulk (SBLK), Diana Shipping (DSX) and Navios Maritime Partners (NMM), looking at both the shipping market outlook and the financial structuring of each name.
8. Modus Operandi Changes
New technologies like cloud-based solutions, blockchain, the Internet of Things and the Digitization of business are slowly taking shape and are bound to transform the “modus operandi” of the shipping industry. In its everlasting quest of chasing margins and boosting competitiveness and efficiency, new digital tools are beginning to change old business models throughout the maritime industry. As such, new business opportunities arise. Speaking in an interview Mr. George M. Marinakis, CEO of Setel Hellas, has discussed the shifting landscape and his vision of the future.
9. Going for Gold
Ship owners, managers, and operators should aim for training excellence, rather than just attaining the minimum standards required. Training is a key tool for attracting and retaining high-calibre seafarers in a competitive market, according to Mark Woodhead, KVH Videotel senior vice president EMEA. “Training needs to be part of a shipping company’s DNA,” Mr. Woodhead said, “and as our seafarers embrace the shift towards continuous learning, we need to develop cultures that support and demand it.” Shipping offers a structured career path, unlike many jobs today, and continuous training and development are integral. 
10. Almost Over the Line
Maersk Line has received clearance for its acquisition of German liner company Hamburg Süd in 18 jurisdictions, with three more approvals remaining to be secured, Søren Skou, CEO of Maersk Group said. Describing the acquisition as “well-timed”, Skou said that in the best case scenario the remaining approvals would be obtained by the end of this month. As informed, the company is going through motions with the relevant authorities from the remaining three geographies on clearing the deal. The liner major confirmed its previous expectations on launching the integration of Hamburg Süd in the fourth quarter of 2017.

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


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