Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 17/10/2018
1. ONE Giant Loss
Carrier consolidation can prove tricky as evidenced today with news of a massive revision of projected earnings from Japan’s Ocean Network Express (ONE). The carrier, the merged liner divisions of Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL), Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha (K Line) and Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK), officially started operations on April 1, the start of the Japanese financial year, and is now on course to be one of the worst performers among all global box carriers in 2018. MOL, K Line and NYK were all forced to revise downwards their own full year financial projections today on the worse than expected news from the sixth largest carrier.
2. Crew Killed in Fall
A Canadian crew member from handysize bulk carrier Spruceglen died after he fell off the ship into the St. Lawrence Seaway on Tuesday. According to local reports, the 57-year-old Canadian man lost his balance and fell into the water while he was tying the ship off prior to entering the Eisenhower Locks.
St. Lawrence Seaway employees entered the water to rescue the man, who was sent to the Massena Memorial Hospital in New York State for emergency treatment. He was pronounced dead two hours later.
3. New Jobs for New Seafarers
The ICS has released a study on autonomous ships on the role of seafarers, indicating that there will be no shortage of jobs for seafarers, especially officers, in the next two decades. The report, conducted by the Hamburg School of Business Administration, states: If by 2025 very optimistically some 1,000 ships will be fully autonomous and some further 2,000 vessels semi-autonomous, this may possibly reduce demand for seafarers by 30,000 – 50,000. However, at the same time the need for highly skilled remote-operators, pilots of a new kind and riding gangs will be needed to keep ships operational.
4. Interferry Chief Welcomed
Interferry, the trade association representing the worldwide ferry industry, has announced that the new chairman of its board of directors is John Steen-Mikkelsen, CEO of Danish ferry operator Danske Faerger. He was elected together with three new board members at the annual general meeting held last week in Cancun, Mexico, during the association’s 43rd annual conference. Steen-Mikkelsen brings a wealth of experience from his 10 years as an Interferry board member and his role operating six domestic ferry routes in Denmark and two international services to Sweden and Germany.
5. Rolls-Royce and Intel Together
Rolls-Royce and Intel are teaming up to develop autonomous ships. The new vessels the pair aim to develop will have systems with the same technology found in smart cities, autonomous cars and drones. In a release, the pair claim the new shipping intelligence systems will have data centre and artificial intelligence capabilities as well as sophisticated edge computing throughout that independently manage navigation, obstacle detection and communications. Kevin Daffey, a director at Rolls-Royce, claimed: Together, we’ll blend the best of the best, Intel and Rolls-Royce to change the world of shipping.
6. Full Ahead on Scrubbers
Ship owners accelerated installations of engine cleaning systems this year ahead of stringent new rules in 2020 which sharply reduce the amount of sulphur ships can emit from the 3.5 percent in current bunker fuel to 0.5 percent, according to a report. Vessel operators can either switch to cleaner, but more expensive, marine gasoil or install scrubbers to filter sulphur from dirtier fuel oil. The looming change in International Maritime Organization (IMO) rules has impacted fuel and gasoil futures.
7. Trump Militarising the Markets
President Donald Trump’s administration is considering using West Coast military facilities to export coal and natural gas to Asia, according to an Associated Press report, citing U.S. Department of Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke. The move would help fossil fuel producers ship their products to Asia and circumvent environmental concerns in Democratic-leaning states like Washington, Oregon and California that have rejected efforts to build new coal ports. Zinke told AP – it’s in our interest for national security and our allies to make sure that they have access to affordable energy commodities.
8. World’s Longest Vessel Vision
Norwegian aquaculture company Nordlaks is building what may well become the world’s largest vessel by length, a gigantic moored fish farm platform dubbed Havfarm1. In February, Nordlaks signed a contract with Chinese yard CIMC Raffles to build the semi-catamaran design at its yard in Shandong Province. Its hull measures 430 meters long, enough to make it the longest vessel in the world (though not the longest self-propelled vessel). According to Nordlaks spokesman Lars Fredrik Martinussen, the firm is on track to begin operations with Havfarm in the second quarter of 2020.
9. Clusters Working Together
The members of the European Network of Maritime Clusters (ENMC) have unanimously agreed, during the annual meeting held in Malta, to release the following statement on the departure of the United Kingdom from the European Union; The European maritime community supports Maritime UK’s ambition for a mutually beneficial deal between the UK and EU. “At this critical stage in the negotiations we need calm heads and a sharp focus on delivering the sensible, mutually-beneficial deal both sides of the channel rely upon. We need to be able to provide certainty and stability to our businesses as soon as possible.
10. Somali Pirates Strike Again
A merchant vessel was attacked in the Gulf of Aden, offshore Somalia, while transiting the area on October 16, the United Kingdom Maritime Trade Operations (UKMTO) informed. Shots were fired at the unnamed ship from a skiff that tailed the vessel. However, as the armed guards on board the ship returned fire the gang from the skiff abandoned their plan of boarding the vessel and departed. The captain of the ship confirmed to UKMTO that the vessel was safe. There have been injuries reported to the crew. UKMTO warned the vessels transiting the area to exercise caution.
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions www.seacurus.com