News & Media

23 August, 2019

Australian Newsletter - Issue 588

'NOT GOING TO PUT ODDS ON IT': OIL SEARCH HOPES PNG SORTED BY MONTH'S END
Source: Nick Toscano (Sydney Morning Herald)
Australian-listed oil and gas producer Oil Search and its joint-venture partners are seeking urgent answers from the Papua New Guinea government over whether or not it intends to renegotiate the terms of a $20 billion liquefied natural gas deal following the resignation of its prime minister. The deal for the Papua LNG project – a joint venture between Total, Exxon Mobil Corp and Oil Search – was agreed in April after 12 months of negotiation with the PNG government. But the project has been beset by uncertainty since PNG's Prime Minister Peter O'Neill was ousted in May and the government's new leadership "signalled its desire to renegotiate some of the agreement terms”.  FULL STORY

CHINA CLOSES ON JAPAN AS AUSTRALIA’S MAJOR LNG CUSTOMER
Source: Andy Ewe (Australian Mining)
Japan was the largest consumer of Australian liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the 2019 financial year, followed closely by China. Japan bought 29.5 million tonnes of LNG, while China bought 27.2 million tonnes. This comprised 39 per cent and 36 per cent of all Australian LNG exports, according to an LNG report released by EnergyQuest. The remaining 10 per cent of LNG exports to North Asia went to Korea, becoming an increasingly important LNG customer. EnergyQuest chief executive Graeme Bethune said, “The concentration of Australian LNG trade in North Asia is both a strength and weakness. A strength as North Asia is the world’s largest and fastest-growing LNG market. A weakness from lack of diversification and the risks this involves.”  FULL STORY

NEW OCEANA SERVICES FOR CONTAINER LINE ANNOUNCED
Source: Handy Shipping Guide
Beginning in October 2019, Hamburg Süd will be offering expanded and enhanced ‘AUSE’ services between Australia and Southeast Asia.
The service will be split into two strings called AUSE 1 and AUSE 2. They will offer faster transit times to and from all key markets in Australia and Southeast Asia including the new direct calls at Port Kelang (Malaysia) and Jakarta (Indonesia). Tanjung Pelapas will be the second Malaysian destination whilst the Thai port of Laem Chabang is also included in the first of the schedules. Hamburg Süd says customers will benefit from an express Brisbane to Southeast Asia hub connections arriving in Singapore in 12 days, as well as market leading transit times from Southeast Asia to Fremantle, Adelaide and Brisbane.  FULL STORY

PORT KEMBLA LNG TERMINAL DELAYED BY DEMAND FOR DOUBLE CAPACITY
Source: Ross Greenwood (2GB)
The state’s first liquified natural gas (LNG) terminal port may be delayed until 2021 as high demand requires it to double its capacity. The New South Wales government approved plans for the Port Kembla LNG terminal to bring gas from the west coast to the east coast. But feedback from the community has shown there is a greater demand for gas than originally thought. One of the joint-venture partners Squadron Energy CEO Stuart Johnston tells Ross Greenwood they were surprised by the response from potential customers.  FULL STORY and AUDIO

GAS TERMINAL COULD FACE COMPETITION FROM NEWCASTLE
Source: Glen Humphries (Illawarra Mercury)
The consortium behind the Port Kembla gas terminal aren't fazed by plans to build a rival plant in Newcastle. Newcastle GasDock Company has put forward a proposal to build a liquefied natural gas terminal in the city's harbour. The state government is considering the plan but has already labelled it as "Critical State Significant Infrastructure" (CSSI) - as they did with the Port Kembla plant. A spokeswoman for Australian Industrial Energy, the team responsible for the Port Kembla plant, wasn't surprised that the state might have a second terminal. "The Port Kembla gas terminal created the precedent and so it is hardly surprising the government would need to be even-handed in granting CSSI [status] for a very similar conceptual model," the spokeswoman said.  FULL STORY

ESPERANCE PORT RECEIVES NICKEL EXPORT APPROVALS
Source: Jesinta Burton (The Esperance Express)
After more than five years of preparations, the Department of Water and Environmental Regulation has issued formal approval for Southern Ports Authority to export nickel from Esperance. The approval, which was issued in July, comes after the port undertook an extensive planning process to prove that it could effectively manage the loading of nickel. Southern Ports Esperance environment manager Alex Leonard welcomed the approval and said it was the result of three years of extensive data gathering. "Achieving approval is a welcome development and has resulted from three years of extensive data gathering of levels of respirable nickel, which was measured on the boundary of the port and the town," he said.  FULL STORY

BUNBURY PORT NOT INCLUDED ON WESTPORT TASKFORCE'S SHORTLIST
Source: Thomas Munday (Bunbury Mail)
Bunbury has not been included on Westport Taskforce's shortlist of future port and supply chain options. Three standalone options for Kwinana and two shared options for Kwinana/Fremantle made the cut. The five shortlisted options performed the best in relation to the taskforce's multi-criteria analysis process. Westport Taskforce independent chair Nicole Lockwood said there were several reasons as to why Bunbury was left off the list. "We analysed each of the options against a range of criteria. For Bunbury, the key inhibitors revolved around the depth of the port," she said.  FULL STORY

EIGHT NEW ART 85-32W ROTORTUGS ARRIVE IN PORT HEDLAND
Source: The Maritime Executive
Eight of Robert Allan Ltd.’s new ART 85-32W Rotortugs have arrived on site in Port Hedland, Western Australia. Fortescue Metals Group Ltd’s (FMG) subsidiary, Pilbara Marine Pty Ltd, selected the ART 85-32W Rotortug design to make up their fleet of tugs for their towage operation in Port Hedland. KOTUG is contract holder for the operation of the vessels on behalf of FMG. The ART 85-32W design builds on the success of the ART 80-32, having a sponsoned hull form adapted to suit the Rotortug concept, a similar layout of working decks, accommodations, and wheelhouse. The new tug has been modified to cope with the higher Bollard Pull, including 1.2 metres additional beam and increased flare to provide increased stability during escorting, while also enhancing manoeuvrability.  FULL STORY

NZ MUST JOIN GULF SHIPPING EFFORT
Source: NZ National Party (Scoop.co.nz)
New Zealand must not sit on the sidelines while Australia and other countries move to protect vital shipping lanes in the Middle East, National’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson Gerry Brownlee says. “Australia has today done the right thing by committing a ship, a surveillance aircraft and defence personnel to a multilateral effort to keep the Strait of Hormuz between the Persian Gulf and the Gulf of Oman open and safe for ships to pass through. “Embarrassingly the Defence Minister Ron Mark, has responded by saying he can’t send a ship or a plane because these assets are out of action or overburdened.”  FULL STORY

CRUISE SHIP NUMBERS AND SPEND SWELLING
Source: SunLive
The number of cruise ships visiting New Zealand, and the amount of spending by cruise ship passengers has continued to rise significantly.
Auckland and Tauranga have had the largest total spending by port so far. In the June 2019 year, Tauranga recorded the largest increase in the number of passengers. Cruise ship spending is going full steam ahead, swelling 28 per cent to $570 million in the year ended June 2019, Stats NZ said on Friday. The $125.2 million lift in annual cruise spending reflected a surge in the number of cruise voyages, port calls, and passengers. This followed an 11 per cent increase for the June 2018 year.  FULL STORY

NAPIER PORT LISTS ON NZX, JUST THE THIRD COMPANY IN TWO YEARS TO DO SO
Source: Bonnie Flaws (stuff.co.nz)
Napier Port's new shareholders saw the value of their investment rise when company listed on the NZX on Tuesday. In the first five minutes of trading Napier Port Holdings (NPH) share price rose to $2.91 and within two hours it had risen to $2.99. Napier Port chief executive Todd Dawson said it was a "good little uplift", but the success of the initial book build had indicated it might go that way. Investors paid $2.60 a share through an initial public offering (IPO) for 45 per cent of the port company, raising $234 million. The port is only the third company in two years to list on the NZX. Cannasouth, a medical cannabis company, listed in July and Oceania Healthcare in May 2017.  FULL STORY

COMMERCIAL PORT TO DEPLOY NEW ZEALAND'S LARGEST HC SYSTEM
Source: Devin Yoshimoto (Hydrocarbons 21)
New Zealand’s largest hydrocarbon-based refrigeration system is scheduled to be up and running at Eastland Port by early 2020. Two cold-storage areas will deliver 1 MW of cooling for nearly 3.5 million kg of kiwifruit per year. The system will deliver over 1 MW (284.3 TR) of cooling for two cold-storage areas that will handle nearly 3.5 million kg (7.7 million lbs) of kiwifruit per year, according to New Zealand-based system supplier EcoChill. EcoChill specializes in installing natural-refrigerant based cooling systems in New Zealand and is responsible for the design, building, and installation of the Eastland Port system.  FULL STORY

PORT OTAGO WORKERS CONSIDERED INDUSTRIAL ACTION AS PAY, SAFETY NEGOTIATIONS CONTINUE
Source: Stuff.co.nz
Workers at Port Otago have voted for an overtime ban if talks with management about pay and safety issues are not successful. The action was confirmed on Thursday afternoon after more than 250 workers at the Dunedin port voted in favour of the ban. The move was made in response to Port Otago's "failure to engage on our key claims in collective bargaining", combined unions' spokesman John Kerr said. More than 250 Port Otago staff are represented by the Rail and Maritime Transport Union and the Maritime Union of New Zealand. "We've been in bargaining with Port Otago since May, and the main sticking points are safety and pay."  FULL STORY

INDONESIA TO ENFORCE IMO 2020 RULE ON ALL SHIPPING AFTER INITIAL PUSHBACK PLANS
Source: Surabhi Sahu and Anita Nugraha (S&P Global)
Indonesia will fulfill its MARPOL Annex VI obligations to enforce the 0.5% sulfur cap regulations from January 1st 2020. Sudiono, the director of shipping and maritime affairs at Indonesia's transport ministry, told S&P Global on Wednesday that the country is fully committed to enforcing the International Maritime Organization's 2020 rule on all Indonesian-flagged vessels both for domestic and foreign shipping. This comes after the government had said some weeks ago that it would follow IMO's 0.5% sulfur rules for international shipping, but it will continue to allow domestic shipping to burn 3.5% sulfur fuels.  FULL STORY

HALIFAX PORT AUTHORITY NAMES AUSTRALIAN CAPTAIN AS NEW CEO
Source: The Chronicle Herald
Capt. Allan Gray will take over as the new president and CEO of the Halifax Port Authority in late November, it was revealed on Thursday.
The port authority revealed Gray would be replacing current port authority CEO Karen Oldfield in news release on Thursday. He will first complete his term as the harbour master and general manager-operations of Fremantle Ports in Perth, Australia, before taking over the Halifax job. Gray plans to attend the annual Port Days events in Halifax on Sept. 18-19 where he will be introduced to the port community. FULL STORY

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