Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 02/11/2018
1. Seafarer Suicide Fears
Head of the Liberian Register, Scott Bergeron has been asking a very important question. What’s killing our seafarers? Bergeron says many are victims of potential suicide (though there is not enough evidence to classify their deaths as such). Solving this problem might require a rethink on how we address training and health education for seafarers. Onshore everyone can access doctors, counsellors, and information about health issues. At sea things are different those at sea have a duty to each other to ‘red flag’ health and mental wellness concerns…because no one else can.
2. New Maersk Booking System
Maersk claims a new instant booking confirmation tool it is launching is a first for the container shipping industry and will make booking a box as easy as buying a flight ticket. With the introduction of instant booking confirmation, Maersk customers can now complete their bookings within seconds compared to previous waiting times of up to two hours. “We are now making it as easy for our customers to book a container as booking a flight ticket. Instant booking confirmation makes it faster, easier and simpler for our customers to interact with Maersk,” A.P. Moller – Maersk.
3. More West African Attacks
Details are emerging of further West African hijackings, this time further south than other recent incidents. The tanker Anuket Amber was bunkering LPG tanker BW Frigg on October 30 when pirates attacked both ships just off Pointe-Noire in the republic of Congo. While the BW ship was able to escape, the Anuket Amber was hijacked and its crew taken hostage. On the same day in a similar area the offshore supply vessel Ark Tze was also taken by pirates and four crew kidnapped and transferred to the held Anuket Amber. Pirate attacks in West Africa have soared in recent months, principally off Nigeria.
4. Surprise and Demand
The supply/demand imbalance in the container segment is worsening with the 2018 will mark the lowest level of boxship scrapping since 2008, despite a recent pickup in vessels heading for recycling yards. Alphaliner data shows that this year the container fleet will take on some 1.35m teu in new deliveries, up from the 1.19m teu seen last year. In contrast, containership capacity scrapped by the end of October has reached just 52,150 teu. “Although a surge in vessel sales for demolition in October could bring up the full year deletions figure to around 100,000 teu”, the pace the lowest on since 2008,” Alphaliner says.
5. Nigerians Resume Crude Exports
Nigerian state-run Nigerian National Petroleum Commission (NNPC) has announced that subsidiary NIDAS Shipping Services will resume crude shipping services after seven years of suspended operations. The company said the re-entry of its shipping services subsidiary was in tandem with its ongoing efforts to rejuvenate some subsidiaries to increase revenues. According to Ndu Ughamadu, head of public affairs division of NNPC, NIDAS has set up a chartering and operation desk in its UK office as a first step to regain its market position.
6. Closure of Appledore Yard
British engineering and defence firm Babcock International said on Thursday it was closing its Appledore shipyard in Devon, a “difficult” decision after orders ran out. Babcock said it hoped to offer all 199 employees at Appledore positions at other Babcock facilities, such as nearby Devonport, which is a British Navy dockyard. The southwest England Appledore yard completed an Irish Navy order for an offshore patrol vessel in the last few weeks but was not engaged in any orders from Babcock’s main client, Britain’s Ministry of Defence.
7. Critics Fear Marine Dumping
Thousands of ships are set to install “emissions cheat” systems that pump pollutants into the ocean to beat new international rules banning dirty fuel. The global shipping fleet is rushing to meet a 2020 deadline imposed by the IMO to reduce air pollution by forcing vessels to use cleaner fuel with a lower sulphur content of 0.5%. The move comes after growing concerns about the health impacts of shipping emissions. A report in Nature this year said 400,000 premature deaths a year are caused by emissions from dirty shipping fuel, critics claim the move could see harmful pollutants increasingly dumped at sea.
8. ONE Bad Result
Container line joint venture Ocean Network Express (ONE) dragged down NYK Line in the first half of 2018 ended September 30 with Japanese shipping group in the red. NYK Line reported a loss of $86million for the six months ended September 30, compared with a big profits a year earlier. The new shipping line ONE, which was established with the aim of integrating the container shipping businesses of K Line, NYK and MOL.
9. UAE Looks to MLC
The UAE is working towards ratifying the International Labour Organization’s Maritime Labour Convention (MLC), following a sharp rise in seafarer abandonment cases over the past two years. The MLC, dubbed the seafarers bill of rights, concerns the right of seafarers to decent conditions of work and rest.
Abdulla Darwish Al Hayyas, director of maritime transport affairs at the country’s Federal Transport Authority states that the UAE has seen 60 crew abandonment cases involving 300 seafarers in the last couple of years.
10. CMA CGM Sulphur Charges
French container shipping company CMA CGM is implementing low sulphur surcharge from/to the ports of Shanghai and Ningbo in China. Since October 1, 2018, the 0.5% sulphur limit is applicable to the abovementioned ports. As informed, the company will impose the new surcharge as from November 15, 2018 (date of loading in the origin ports). According to CMA CGM, the move comes in an effort “to ensure the sustainability and reliability of our (CMA CGM’s) services in a challenging environment.”
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions www.seacurus.com