Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 21/11/2018
1. Digital Cash for Crew
Japan’s Nippon Yusen Kaisha (NYK) will soon introduce its own digital currency to pay its crew, Bloomberg is reporting. The digital currency will be pegged to the US dollar. Details of the new payment project such as whether it will use blockchain or be a cryptocurrency variant remain unknown at this stage. NYK will debut the new currency in the first quarter of next year, and it will be carried out using smartphones, with a view to getting a patent on the technology in order to then offer the service to other owners and managers.
2. Action Against Fraud
Singapore authorities are acting against locally listed commodities trading house Noble Group more than three years after the first reports of accounting irregularities surfaced at the company. The Commercial Affairs Department (CAD) of the Singapore Police Force (SPF), the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) and the Accounting and Corporate Regulatory Authority (ACRA) are jointly investigating suspected false and misleading statements and breaches of disclosure requirements under the Securities and Futures Act, and potential non-compliance with accounting standards.
3. Alliance Port Concerns
European politicians, port operators and dockworkers are lining up in support of a report issued at the start of this month from the International Transport Forum warning on the risks of overly dominant alliances in container shipping. The 127-page report entitled The Impact of Alliances in Container Shipping penned by a team from the ITF, a body administrated by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), called upon the European Commission to ensure the EU Consortia Block Exemption Regulation for liner shipping is not extended beyond its current timeframe extending to April 2020.
4. Alleged Anti-Trust Practices
India’s antitrust regulator has ordered a probe into alleged anti-competitive practices by Denmark’s A.P. Moller-Maersk and Dubai’s DP World at the terminals they operate at the country’s largest container port in Mumbai, five sources familiar with the matter told Reuters. The decision by the Competition Commission of India (CCI) to investigate follows a complaint by Singapore’s PSA International Pte Ltd, which alleged that Maersk and DP World created entry barriers to hinder the growth of PSA’s terminal by colluding on certain charges they levy at the state-owned Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT).
5. INEOS Swoops on Oil Assets
Britain’s richest man Jim Ratcliffe’s oil and gas company Ineos Group Holdings is in exclusive talks with ConocoPhillips to buy North Sea oil and gas fields worth $3 billion from the U.S. energy company. Various news paper reports say that British petrochemicals company has confirmed it is negotiating to buy several North Sea oil fields from U.S. energy giant. The Sunday Times, which first reported the story, said that the period is said to be set to three months after the entity registered in Switzerland agreed to pay a “substantial” deposit.
6. UK Issues MASS Guidance
UK has issued version 2 of the Maritime Autonomous Surface Ships (MASS) UK Code of Practice, giving greater guidance on skills, training and vessel registration. The UK Maritime Autonomous Systems Regulatory Working Group (MASRWG) published the first code of practice to global industry-wide acclaim in November 2017. Whilst not a legal text, the Code has been used by manufacturers, service providers, and others as part of their day-to-day work. Many manufacturers have reported clients requiring compliance with the Code as a basis for contractual negotiations.
7. Vision of the Future
How Will Ship Routing Look in Fifteen Years? Ships will be much more digitally connected with increasing access to high-speed internet. This will allow route suggestions to be delivered in a format that the Master can accept directly into the ECDIS (Electronic Chart Display and Information System), rather than having to load them manually. This is why we’re moving towards integrating all routing services more tightly with voyage planning and route transfer directly to ECDIS. Information may be delivered to a shore-side operations facility rather than the vessel itself.
8. Start Thinking for 2020 Now
While the sulphur cap is still very much the issue of the day Martin Stopford, president of Clarkson Research Services, says the industry needs to start thinking now how it will meet the IMO’s goal of a 50% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2050. “I think it is good time to start thinking about the GHG emissions target which IMO has set us. Their vision is to reduce GHG emissions by 50% in 2050. compared to 2008 and they want a lot further than that and said they wanted us to phase it out completely and they want us to do it quickly as possible,” said in Hong Kong this week.
9. Swooping for Scrubbers
Eagle Bulk Shipping is upping the ante when it comes to scrubber investments having exercised options to purchase 15 additional exhaust gas cleaning systems. The company joins other bulk shipping counterparts that are boosting their scrubber orderbook as the countdown for the 2020 sulphur cap begins.
Eagle Bulk had entered into a deal for up to 37 scrubbers intended for retrofits, comprised of firm orders for 19 scrubbers and up to 18 optional units. The company intends to complete the 34 scrubber installations by January 1, 2020.
10. Outlawing Migrant Rescue Vessel
Italian judicial authorities have ordered rescue ship Aquarius, chartered by SOS Mediterranee, a European humanitarian organization engaged in rescuing migrants in the Mediterranean, to be seized. The move follows an investigation by the Prosecutor’s Office of Catania, into the alleged unclassified disposal of onboard waste and claims that the charterer illegally profited from it. “We categorically refuse accusations of involvement in illegal activities. Standard procedures, that have not been questioned by authorities so far, have always been followed by the Aquarius,” SOS Mediterranee, said in a statement.
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions www.seacurus.com