Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 24/05/2018




Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 24/05/2018

1. Piracy Unabated
Pirate attacks remain a serious threat off the Horn of Africa, the coast of Latin America and in the Gulf of Guinea. The high rate of piracy and maritime kidnapping in the Gulf of Guinea continues unabated. Kidnap-for-ransom
continues to plague the region, which is a trend that has unfortunately continued from 2016. 100 seafarers were taken hostage, including 90 who were held for longer than one day and at least two who were killed. 
https://bit.ly/2s743ic
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2. Dark Days for VLCCs 
VLCCs have been losing $2,100 per day so far this year. Allied Shipbroking has revealed that the earnings have been especially bad in April. Despite record scrapping levels the rates are not rebounding. Brokers are also perplexed by the slew of new build
orders placed at yards this year.
https://bit.ly/2s2JvrS
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3. Rebels Threaten Shipping
The armed forces of the United Arab Emirates announced that they have destroyed two boats belonging to Houthi rebels in the Red Sea. The boats were threatening oil tankers. The action followed several weeks after a missile
attack on the bulker Ince Inebolu off Hodeidah, Yemen. 
EUNAVFOR intelligence and security chief Maj. Tom Mobbs says Houthi rebels based on shore or on land were "almost certainly" responsible for that attack.  
https://bit.ly/2IHKh86
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4. Airline Search Called Off
Malaysia’s new Transport Minister has announced that the search for Malaysia Airlines Flight MH370 will end on May 29.  U.S.-based exploration firm Ocean Infinity has nearly completed its search of the target area and not
found it. Ocean Infinity had a 90-day “no cure, no pay” agreement with the government. If the wreck or black box is found, the company will receive $70 million.
https://bit.ly/2KRO0wb
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5. Crew Released from Captivity
Pirates have released eleven hostages kidnapped from a Dutch cargo ship off the coast of Nigeria last month.
Their release was confirmed Wednesday by ship manager ForestWave.  The hostages were crew members of the FWN Rapide, which was attacked by pirates April 21 as it was nearing Port Harcourt,
Nigeria.
https://bit.ly/2klTeoI
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6. Navy Charges Dropped
The U.S. Navy’s prosecutors have dropped a charge of negligent homicide against Commander Alfredo Sanchez, the former commanding officer of the USS John S. McCain, for his role in the vessel’s collision with a merchant tanker last year. The accident, which
took the lives of 10 sailors, occurred while Cmdr. Sanchez was on the bridge, and a Navy investigation found that watchstanders’ errors were the primary cause.
https://bit.ly/2IGdP5W
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7. Sanctions Shipping Fears
The latest standoff between the U.S. and Iran may be leaving oil-tanker owners in more of a bind than in previous years. As the U.S. reimposes sanctions oil firms risk losing access to the American financial system. Additionally,
this time around, they’ll have to contend with being cut off from the booming business of transporting crude pumped from shale fields in Texas or wells in the Gulf of Mexico, according to shipbroker Braemar ACM.
https://bit.ly/2GMSEt0
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8. Crude Cost Spiralling
Analysts at investment bank Morgan Stanley have predicted that crude oil prices could spiral to $90 a barrel by 2020 as the IMO’s 0.5% sulphur cap boosts demand from ship operators for more refined products. The bank said
that the new regulations, effective from January 2020, will trigger a boom in demand for middle distillates which require more refining than 3.5% sulphur heavy fuel oil (HFO), the principal residual fuel used by many thousands of ships today.
https://bit.ly/2KP6Unu
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9. Future for Banks
Over 60% of banks surveyed in the new ICC report-Global Trade: Securing FutureGrowth -reported to have implemented, or to be in the process of implementing, technology solutions to digitalise their trade finance operations.
However, only 9% of banks reported that the solutions implemented have so far led to a reduction of time and costs in trade finance transactions.
https://bit.ly/2KPCIZz
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10. Clean Air Strategy
The UK Government has released the Clean Air Strategy 2018, requiring all major ports in England to develop air quality plans within the next year. These emissions reduction plans, to be submitted by May 2019, will be reviewed
periodically to establish if the measures are effective or whether government action is required, the government said. The strategies need to outline measures to reduce emissions across the port estate including ship activities.
https://bit.ly/2kk1Axl
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Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions  www.seacurus.com
S. Jones
Seacurus Ltd
Seacurus Ltd.,
Barbican Group,  
33 Gracechurch Street,
London EC3V 0BT,
UK
www.seacurus.com
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