Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 04/10/2018
1. Slammed for Slow Investigations
Intercargo, the dry bulk owners’ association, has taken a veiled swipe at the Marshall Islands over its slowness in revealing details into the sinking of the Stellar Daisy in March 2017. The VLOC, belonging to Polaris Shipping of South Korea, sank in the South Atlantic 18 months ago with the loss of 22 lives, and, despite pressure from the bereaved families for information, the Marshall Islands register has yet to publish details into how the accident happened. At its AGM Intercargo discussed the Stellar Daisy as well as the sinking of the Emerald Star last year which saw 10 crew lose their lives.
2. UNCTAD Report Released
Seaborne trade expanded by four percent in 2017, the fastest growth in five years, and UNCTAD forecasts similar growth this year, according to its Review of Maritime Transport 2018. UNCTAD’s new Review of Maritime Transport 2018 identifies seven key trends that are currently redefining the maritime transport landscape and shaping the sector’s outlook: Protectionism, Digitalization, Excessive new capacity, Consolidation, The relationship between ports and container shipping lines, Scale, and Climate change.
3. Plastic Clean Success
A project to remove plastic from the Great Pacific Garbage Patch has received the green light to deploy after successful round of testing off the coast of California. Environmental NGO The Ocean Cleanup reported that it has “a go” to move forward with the project. Tests conducted with the help of a Maersk Supply Service offshore tug were successful, fulfilling key requirements for the snake-shaped system, like its u-shaped formation; its speed through the water; its ability to reorient itself when wind and wave directions change; and its resistance to damage in the harsh Pacific Ocean environment.
4. Unease Amongst Owners
There is considerable unease among global shippers/BCOs (Beneficial Cargo Owners) and freight forwarders ahead of the IMO’s 2020 global emissions regulations, due to come into force on 1 January 2020, according to a survey conducted by global shipping consultancy Drewry. Particular uncertainty and concern was expressed by respondents in both the survey and follow-up interviews about carriers’ methods of fuel cost recovery with more than half of all respondents (56%) stating that they did not consider their service providers’ existing approaches as either fair or transparent.
5. Huge Fuel Costs
France-based box ship giant CMA CGM, which took over Singapore’s Neptune Orient Lines (NOL), estimates it would incur about US$1.5 billion (S$2.06 billion) to comply with a green shipping regulation that will cap sulphur content in marine fuels. This is based on an extrapolation of CMA CGM’s share of some US$15 billion in estimated exposure, one industry publication said. The container shipping segment may sustain from the implementation of the International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO’s) 2020 global sulphur cap, APL’s chief executive, Nicolas Sartini, said at SIBCON 2018.
6. Managing Ships or Rules?
Speaking at an INTERCARGO event in London, Chairman John Platsidakis asked “Are we managing ships or are we managing regulations? “We were supposed to do the first, but I am afraid we are mostly doing the second! By the time we conclude one regulation, another one appears in the scene.” INTERCARGO welcomes regulations which are practical, possible to achieve and which take into consideration the way ocean going tramp shipping performs, he said. “Along with our hugely supportive attitude for IMO we have, though, our concerns of how well IMO comes up with practical and achievable regulations.”
7. Crude Shipments Stop
U.S. crude oil shipments to China have “totally stopped”, the President of China Merchants Energy Shipping Co (CMES) said on Wednesday, as the trade war between the world’s two biggest economies takes its toll on what was a fast growing businesses. Washington and Beijing have slapped steep import tariffs on hundreds of goods in the past months. And although U.S. crude oil exports to China, which only started in 2016, have not yet been included, Chinese oil importers have shied away from new orders recently.
8. Food Dropped to Ship
The U.S. Coast Guard airdropped a large supply of food to the crew of a cargo ship that is adrift approximately 1,380 miles southeast of Bermuda after the vessel became disabled while transiting from Greece to Haiti. The Coast Guard was notified Sunday morning that the 250-foot Tanzanian-flagged cargo ship, Alta, with 10 people onboard, was disabled and unable to make repairs. The crew reported that they had enough food for two days and water for 15 days, and that there were no injuries or immediate medical concerns.
9. Seaspan Swoops
Hong Kong-based containership owner Seaspan Corporation has entered into a binding term sheet to invest up to USD 200 million in Swiber Holdings Limited, a publicly traded Singaporean owner of offshore vessels. The investment will include USD 20 million in exchange for an 80% economic interest in the restructured Swiber Group, and USD 180 million targeting a USD 1 billion LNG-to-power project in Vietnam under development, in exchange for economic interests in the project.
10. Communications for Crew
Shipowners who neglect to improve onboard connectivity are risking lower productivity and higher staff turnover. The issue of welfare and communications needs of the world’s 1.65M seafarers is a serious and important one. Mariners are still struggling to gain regular access to online applications and communications on board ships. And when these services are available it comes at a high cost. In a recent report it emerged that seafarers are spending anything from US$85 to US$107 per month for communications on ships.
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions www.seacurus.com