Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 21/05/2018

Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 21/05/2018

1. IMO No Delay on Sulphur
In an interview, the Secretary General of the IMO head says ‘no possibility of delay’ to sulphur limit rule for marine fuels. At this point, the regulation which brings into force the 0.5% limit in sulfur in fuel oil from
January 1, 2020 (outside designated emission control areas where the limit is already 0.1%) cannot be changed from a legal perspective, so there is no possibility of delay. 
An inter-sessional group under the auspices of
the Sub-Committee on Pollution Prevention and Response is meeting in July to develop some very detailed guidance on implementing the 0.5% limit.
2. Sooty Gets Clean Sweep
A team of researchers led by Dr. Jun Kang at the Korea Maritime and Ocean University in South Korea, has found a way to convert soot from ship exhaust into graphite for potential use in lithium batteries. Lithium batteries
are used in a wide range of products including phones and electric vehicles, and graphite is one of their key components. In 2017, China was the largest graphite-mining nation by a wide margin, followed by India and Brazil. W
soot generated by ships and graphitized using a heat treatment process is used as an anode material. T

3. Maersk Cost Cutting
Maersk Group CEO Soren Skou told investors that Maersk Line will cut back capacity and feeder services in an attempt to improve profitability. Group-wide revenue rose sharply in the first quarter, up by 30 percent (including
the addition of Hamburg Süd), but its underlying loss nearly doubled to $240 million. 
Earnings from Maersk Group’s core "ocean" business lines (Maersk Line and Hamburg Süd ocean freight, plus APM Terminals’ transshipment hubs) were about $500 million, pulled down by rising bunker prices and unfavourable exchange
4. BP Labours for Sale
BP has been struggling to offload portions of its fleet amid a tepid outlook for tankers. BP Shipping started marketing a trio of elderly MR tankers earlier this year, a move that would have removed the outfit’s exposure to the MR sector. Soon
after a transaction was reported on subjects, with Korean outfit Sinokor confidently listed as the taker. No deal was ever finalised however and the 47,000 dwt British Courtesy, British Serenity and British Tranquility are now reported sold again, albeit for
a much lower price.
5. New Iran Trade Routes
In the wake of Iranian sanctions, an alternative maritime route crossing the Caspian Sea into a series of navigation locks to the town of Volgograd and another series of navigation locks to the Sea of Azov into the Black Sea, Danube River and Mediterranean
Sea has been moooted. The Danube River connects to several European economies and has historically carried much trade, and at the present day, tugs push and navigate trains of coupled barges along several sections of that river. Several navigable Russian rivers
flow into the Black Sea and provide cost competitive maritime passage between several Russian and European cities.
6. EU Red Tape Demands
The shipping ministers of Cyprus, Malta and Greece say they want the European Union to cut red tape holding back growth in the sector, which they say provides 2.1 million jobs and 142 billion euros ($168 billion) to Europe’s economy. Greece’s
shipping minister, Panagiotis Kouroumplis, says the 28-member bloc needs to look at ways of making the sector more competitive by getting rid of bureaucratic obstacles. 
Malta’s transport minister, Ian Borg, says work is
underway to look at EU directives that compound the administrative burden on issues including the mutual recognition of seafarers’ qualifications.
7. World Cup Cargo Restrictions
Security restrictions will be in place in certain Russian ports in the period leading up to and during the FIFA 2018 World Cup. An advisory issued by the Harbour Master of the Port of St. Petersburg states that the security restrictions imposed in the
port include the suspension in the carrying and handling of dangerous cargoes, including bunkering operations. Owners and operators of vessels calling at the port of St. Petersburg in the period of 25 May 2018 and 25 July 2018
should note the above suspensions.  
Similar restrictions were imposed during the FIFA Confederations Cup hosted by Russia in 2017.
8. General Average Costs
Shippers with cargo aboard the fire-stricken Maersk Honam will have to stump up over half its value if it is to be released under general average arrangements. MSC, Maersk Line’s 2M partner, confirmed this morning that the
vessel is due to finally dock at Dubai on 22 May, with discharging likely to take between four days and a week. 
This week, vessel salvor Richard Hogg Lindley (RHL) fixed the salvage security at 42.5% of the cargo value,
as well as requiring a further 11.5% as a general average deposit.
9. Missing Containers Investigated
Managers of insolvent P&R Group are being investigated after it was discovered the investment firm sold nearly one million more shipping containers than it owned, the Munich prosecutors’ office said on Thursday. Once the
world’s biggest lessor of shipping containers, P&R sells containers to investors and its sister company in Switzerland rents them out to shipping companies. 
P&R later buys back the containers from investors. P&R
has sold some 1.6 million containers to around 54,000 investors for $4.12 billion, but 
a tally after its insolvency has shown that P&R only has a fleet of around 600,000 containers.

10. Seatrade Making People Happy
The finalists have been announced for this year’s Seatrade Awards – which is also the 30th anniversary of this prestigious awards scheme. The longest running and most respected awards of its kind – Seatrade Awards take place
on 29 June 2018 at The Landmark London and will be attended by more than 300 of the maritime industry’s most powerful influencers. 
The Awards celebrate the exceptional achievements of the maritime community and ground-breaking
innovations. The Seafarers Happiness Index from the Mission to Seafarers has been shortlisted in the "Investment in People" category.
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions
S. Jones
Seacurus Ltd
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Barbican Group,  
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