Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 14/11/2018
1. Pushing Back on Trade Wars
International Chamber of Shipping chairmen Esben Poulsson has pushed back against the US tariff policies and emphasized the benefits of free commerce between nations. “The view that international trade can be seen as some kind of zero sum game is demonstrably false,” Poulsson said. He suggested that the White House’s concerns could be best addressed through existing institutions, especially the WTO. “We note that of more than 100 trade complaints which the U.S. has so far brought to the WTO for adjudication – more cases than put forward by any other country – the US has won over 90 percent,” he said.
2. Time to Act for Seafarers
A regional meeting of Asia’s leading seafaring nations has highlighted the plight many seafarers face in the event of a maritime accident and has pledged to lead the drive towards proper and effective implementation of the IMO and ILO agreed Guidelines on the Fair Treatment of Seafarers. The meeting, held in Manila yesterday, was organised by Seafarers’ Rights International (SRI), and DOLE, the Philippine Department of Labor and Employment. Senior government representatives from more than 10 countries said the time was right for action to be taken to protect their seafarers.
3. Japan Complains About Yards
Japan has officially launched a complaint at the World Trade Organization (WTO) over Seoul’s state funding of local shipbuilders after dialogue between the two countries failed to solve the issue. “The measures in question relate to the development, production, marketing, and/or sale or purchase of commercial vessels, including vessels designed to carry crude oil, liquefied natural gas (LNG), and shipping containers,” Japan’s complaint, filed yesterday, said. Japan claims Seoul has used “producer support” and “sales support” such as direct financing to keep its struggling shipbuilders in business.
4. Coffin Ship Concerns
United Filipino Seafarers (UFS), a Manila-based crew advocacy group, has called on the government to establish an Admiralty Court. The Philippines has one of the worst maritime safety records in the world and is also beset by high levels of corruption. UFS president Nelson Ramirez said an Admiralty Court could pursue action against officials in regulatory bodies such as the Maritime Industry Authority (MARINA) and the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) found not to be doing their duties properly. Corruption in issuing certificates for ships across the archipelago, Ramirez said, has created a fleet of “floating coffins”.
5. Addressing Suicide Confusion
In response to apparent misquoting of UK Club suicide data, Kuba Szymanski of InterManager has spoken out. According to research it is not isolation which pushes people to commit suicide but a lack of perspective, a hopeless situation and very often financial worries. Also, the most endangered professions are those who have ready access to the ‘tools’ to take their lives away. It is worrying then that seafaring was considered a very risky profession, as far as suicide is concerned, nowadays … things are improving, and need to be better communicated and understood.
6. Norway and Shipping Change
It’s about more than maritime. Harald Solberg, CEO of the Norwegian Shipowners’ Association, sees a world of opportunity from his office overlooking Oslo. Here he talks markets, innovation, ocean developments, and even rubbish. Right at the top of the imposing Norwegian Shipowners’ Association (NSA) building in central Oslo, Solberg seems very much at home. The relatively new CEO of the NSA is the embodiment of a transition taking place in Norwegian shipping and, arguably, the industry as a whole.
7. BIMCO and 2020 Clauses
International shipping association BIMCO has developed two new bunker clauses dealing with general compliance and the transitional period for the International Maritime Organization’s 2020 MARPOL requirements for the maximum sulphur content in marine fuel. In addition to its other duties, BIMCO is leading provider of maritime clauses and contracts covering the full lifecycle of ship-related operation and activity. The Global Marine Fuel Sulphur Clause for Time Charter Parties was approved by BIMCO’s Documentary Committee at its meeting in Copenhagen. The clauses are set for an early December.
8. Britain Embracing Maritime Services
Whatever the outcome of Brexit negotiations, the UK intends to remain “the undisputed leading global hub for Maritime Services,” Shipping Minister Nusrat Ghani told attendees at the Maritime London/IMIF annual dinner held in the UK capital on Monday evening. The UK remains “the world’s leading supplier of shipbroking services. English law, finessed in this city’s courts, is applied to more shipping disputes than the law of any other country. And London’s marine insurance industry … covers more vessels than anywhere else in the world,” the Minister reminded.
9. The Robots are Coming
Robots could soon take over and simplify the laborious and, at times, dangerous and time-consuming, process of cleaning cargo holds of dry bulk vessels. Danish shipping company Dampskibsselskabet Norden has recently tested and participated in the development of a new belt-driven robot which can be operated remotely to go up and down along the sides of the holds while pressure cleaning them. The new robot would improve safety, reduce water and chemical use and save time in connection with cargo hold cleaning, it is driven forward by belts that are magnetic and therefore stick to the sides of the vessel. http://bit.ly/2QLCA0J
10. Search for Lost Boxes
ROVs will be deployed to investigate containers lost from a cargo ship in heavy seas off Australia. The YM Efficiency, operated by Taiwan shipping company Yang Ming Marine Transport Corporation, was sailing from Taiwan to Sydney in early June when it lost dozens of containers overboard amid five-meter swells in the Tasman Sea. AMSA, citing serious potential impacts to local fishing and the environment, said it has been “extremely concerned at the lack of progress in locating the remaining containers” and “the absence of any attempt to assess the need to recover the containers and debris found so far on the seabed.”
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions www.seacurus.com