Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 19/02/2019
1. Unseaworthy, Uninsurable Bunkers
The global maritime industry is heading full sail towards a new 0.5% global sulphur cap on fuel content, which will be imposed by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) on January 01, 2020. From that date onwards, shipowners and charterers around the world can only legally take on bunkers with a maximum sulphur content of 0.5%, down from the current level of 3.5%. If theyâre found in breach of the IMOâs new regulation, they will face penalties and their vessels will be declared unseaworthy and therefore uninsurable.
2. Accommodation Block Concerns
The Mission To Seafarers has hit out at todayâs accommodation blocks, suggesting the sterile environment onboard ships nowadays make hospitals look attractive by comparison. The charity is running a series of articles at the moment based on findings from its regular Seafarers Happiness Index. The charity stated: âShipboard living space has been consumed by the sterility of the cargo carrying concept. The frills have been removed, and seafarers are left to live and work in a place which can make a hospital look attractive.â Flooring, panelling, deck heads, furnishing, all have gone the way of âfunction over formâ.
3. Shipbreaking Yard Explosion
An explosion at a shipbreaking yard in Chittagong, Bangladesh killed two workers and injured one. The men were working on the demolition of the VLCC Greek Warrior, IMO 9191412, at Shagorika Shipbreaking Yard. Local media identified the victims as Md Jalil, 32, and Bipul Chandra, 30. Both men died at the hospital, according to authorities. The injured worker, Md Masud, 26, is currently in treatment. According to NGO Shipbreaking Platform, the Warrior was sold for demolition by a Greek owner last year. The same owner has sent about two dozen vessels to South Asian beaches over the course of the last 10 years.
4. Hull and High Water
Japanâs Mitsui OSK Lines (MOL) has tested the use of a subsea remotely operated vehicle (ROV) to inspect the submerged areas of the hull of one of its cable-laying ships. âThe demonstration test clearly showed the viability of checking for faults and damage to submerged outboard equipment and determining the status of damage to the ship bottom using a subsea ROV,â MOL stated in release today, saying the new technology provides a reliable alternative to conventional inspection by a diver.
5. Market is Dublin
Ship insurer Standard Club based in the UK, estimates that about 40% of its business will be written through its new Dublin unit, which has been set up to allow the business to continue to service customers in the European Economic Area (EEA) in the wake of Brexit, according to its chief executive. The Standard Clubâs chief executive, Jeremy Grose, has told The Irish Times that the insurer currently generates about $290 million (â¬257.3 million) of premiums annually.
6. Rotterdam Port Booming
Rotterdam port has relied on container transhipment as its main engine of growth again for 2018, with last yearâs throughput reaching a record 14.5m teu, according to Port of Rotterdam Authority. Box volumes last year at 14.5m teu is an increase of 5.7% compared to 2017. Transhipment volumes recorded 4.5% year-on-year growth. âA key factor in the increase in 2018 was the growth in numbers of transhipment and full import containers. Container exports developed less strongly, partly due to Chinese import restrictions on waste flowsâ Port of Rotterdam Authority stated.
7. Lenders Rescue Troubled Yard
The troubled South Korean shipbuilder Hanjin Heavy Industries & Construction Co said that it has reached an agreement with Philippine banks on debt-rescheduling for its Philippine affiliate HHIC-Phil, Southeast Asiaâs largest shipyard by area size. Philippine creditors agreed to acquire shares of Hanjin Heavy, HHIC-Phil Inc., which operates the yard in Subic Bay, in return for solving surely obligations. This means the scheme includes a debt-for-equity swap with Philippine lenders, it added. Hanjin said the deal would be submitted to a Philippine court by the end of this month.
8. New Cruise Order
Royal Caribbean Cruises Limited (RCL) has ordered a sixth Oasis-class cruise ship from French shipbuilder Chantiers de l’Atlantique for delivery in the fall of 2023. She is the 23rd cruise ship that RCL has ordered from the yard. Chantiers de lâAtlantique has already built Harmony of the Seas, delivered in May 2016, and Symphony of the Seas, delivered in March 2018, and will deliver the third vessel in spring 2021. The first two ships in the class, Oasis of the Seas and Allure of the Seas, were delivered in 2009 and 2010 by STX Europe Turku Shipyard, Finland. The order is contingent upon financing.
9. Discounts for Dry Bulk
The Suez Canal Authority (SCA) has extended discounts concerning dry bulk vessels operating between American and Asian ports after considering ânew changes in the global shipping market and the world economyâ. “SCA pays more attention to its users best interest, and has recently taken steps towards being the safest, most secure, most reliable and most competitive compared to other routes,” said a press release. It said that the rebate granted to (Laden/Ballast) Dry Bulk Vessels operating between Americas’ ports and Asian ports, shall remain in force till the end of 2019.
10. Repair Period Expires
The repair period of Maerskâs Panamax containership Olga Maersk, which caught fire last month, will be extended until February 23, 2019. âGiven the vessel repair is completed by that date, Olga Maersk will be 8-9 days behind schedule and therefore overtaken by MV âSpirit of Sydneyâ Voy. 907S,â German liner company Hapag-Loyd said in an update. The two boxships will be switching their positions on Australia/New Zealand service via Panama (ANP).
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd â providers of MLC crew insurance solutions www.seacurus.com