News & Media

25 October, 2019

Australian Newsletter - Issue 597

THREAT TO GROWTH IN GLOBAL CONTAINER PORT THROUGHPUT AT HIGHEST LEVEL EVER
Source: Gavin van Marle (The Load Star)
Container terminal operators are facing higher risks than at any time in the industry’s history, according to a new report. Container Terminals: Paths to Profitability suggests future investment by operators and investors will need to be more carefully considered than ever before. The 221-page report by industry veterans Remco Stenvert and Andrew Penfold says many of the risks the industry faces are “beyond the control of operators”. “The container port and terminal business faces greater uncertainties now than at any time since the container revolution started in the late 1970s,” it says.  FULL STORY

TRAMP SHIPPERS TO BE MOST CHALLENGED BY IMO 2020 RULE CHANGE
Source: Aaron Sheldrick (Reuters)
Shipping companies running itinerant merchant vessels known as tramps are concerned about sourcing fuel to comply with one of the biggest ever shake-ups of the industry next year, the head of the International Chamber of Shipping (ICS) said. “We believe the (fuel) supplies will inevitably be patchy outside the main bunkering ports, which is of particular concern to the tramp sector,” Guy Platten, secretary general of the ICS, told Reuters in an interview. The ICS represents shipping companies that transport 80% of the world’s merchant tonnage, according to its website.  FULL STORY

SHIPPING FIRMS LOOK TO SAIL INTO THE FUTURE
Source: Marie Wolfrom (Phys.org)
Global shipping firms under pressure to cut carbon emissions are experimenting with an age-old technology: sails to harness ocean winds and reduce reliance on costly fuels. "Five years ago, such projects would have gotten us thrown out by security" at shipping firms, said French naval architect Marc Van Peteghem. "Now shipowners are listening to us," he said. A design from his firm, VPLP, has just been picked by European rocket-maker Ariane Group for a sail-equipped cargo ship to transport parts for its new Ariane 6 launcher to French Guiana starting in 2022. The ship will be equipped with four huge rectangular sails rising 30 metres (100 feet) high, supplementing a motor and cutting fuel consumption by about 30 percent.  FULL STORY

HUDSON SHIPPING LINES HARDENS ITS ANTI-SCRUBBER STANCE
Source: The Maritime Executive
Hudson Shipping Lines has stated its stance against scrubber systems and agreed to provide support to the Environmental Protection Alliance (EPA) and its campaign to ban the use of scrubber systems in the shipping industry. Hudson has previously announced its intentions to not utilize vessels with open or closed loop exhaust scrubbers installed following the implementation of the IMO2020 sulfur cap on January 1, 2020. Hudson says it is disappointed in its peers who have chosen to use the scrubber loophole and will continue burning high sulfur fuel oil (HSFO). Hudson notes that estimates indicate that about 15 percent of the world’s shipping fleet will be equipped with scrubbers.  FULL STORY

JAPAN WON'T JOIN U.S. COALITION TO PROTECT MIDDLE EAST SHIPPING, WILL SEND OWN FORCE
Source: Tim Kelley (Reuters)
Japan said on Friday it will not join any U.S. coalition to protect merchant vessels in Middle Eastern waterways, but will instead send a separate force of ships and planes to guard ships supplying Japan from the key oil-producing region. “We won’t join the United States, but will cooperate closely with them,” Japan’s Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told a news briefing. “Self Defense Force assets will ensure the safety of vessels related to Japan.” Although it is the closest Asian ally of the United States, Japan has been reluctant to join forces with Washington in the Middle East because it maintains close diplomatic and economic ties with Iran. Tokyo has offered to act as a intermediary between the two countries to help ease tension in the region.  FULL STORY

CHINA STARTS TO RELEASE LIQUEFIED NATURAL GAS IMPORT PRICE INDEX
Source: Hellenic Shipping News
China has launched a new price index for liquefied natural gas (LNG) imports to better reflect changes in the market. The LNG comprehensive import price index (the LNG index), jointly developed by a monitoring center under the General Administration of Customs and Shanghai Petroleum and Natural Gas Exchange (SHPGX), came in at 3,497 yuan (about 494 U.S. dollars) per tonne from Oct. 7-13, up 3.2 percent from the week before. The index will be released on a weekly basis to offer a new pricing reference for importers.  FULL STORY

2019: A GOLDEN ERA IN TUG CONSTRUCTION
Source: Barry Luthwaite (Riviera Maritime Media)
A combination of ultra-large container ships and green port strategies is driving newbuilding tug orders worldwide to a 328-unit orderbook. Demand for towing ultra-large container ships in greener ports is dictating the pace of newbuild tug ordering. Changes in towage capabilities are required to handle ever-increasing sizes of ships. And with IMO 2020 almost upon global shipping, there are obligations on ports to comply with the fight against air pollution. FULL STORY

SNAIL FAIL: AUSTRALIA TURNS BACK MERCEDES-BENZ CARS AFTER ESCARGOT CARGO FOUND
Source: The Guardian
Nine-hundred Mercedes-Benz cars have been turned away at the Australian border after dozens of rare and exotic snails were found hiding inside their shipments. More than 30 heath snails (Xerolenta obvia), which have never before been detected in Australia, were found by the Department of Agriculture in shipments of the luxury German car. Australian biosecurity officers have taken the emergency measure of sending all 900 affected cars back to Europe, the department announced on Wednesday.  FULL STORY

CELEBRATING THE SHIPPING CONTAINER IN AUSTRALIA’S TRADE SUCCESS
Source: Minister for Trade, Simon Birmingham
Fifty years ago, the first purpose-built container ship to visit Australia, the Encounter Bay, called into Fremantle and Melbourne. In the decades since, container shipping has revolutionised Australia’s trade with the world. Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment Simon Birmingham today welcomed the launch of the short film ‘World in a Box’ commemorating the anniversary in Australia’s trade history. Film here “By making transport easier, the shipping container has helped Australian exporters overcome the tyranny of distance and get their goods into the hands of consumers across the globe,” said Minister Birmingham.  FULL STORY

DREDGING TO SAVE AUSTRALIAN BEACH
Source: Ines Nastali (DredgingandPorts.com)
The government of New South Wales, Australia, is being urged to explore the fast-tracking of dredging for the proposed Port of Newcastle, Australia, liquified natural gas import terminal, to use the extracted river sand to restore Stockton beach and save it from erosion. The Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) said dredged sand from the Hunter River, which would have naturally joined Stockton beach before the port was constructed, offered a fast, cost-effective, and environmentally sustainable solution to address the current erosion crisis.  FULL STORY

ABB SCOOPS VICTORIAN COAL-TO-HYDROGEN PLANT CONTRACT
Source: Salomae Haselgrove (Australian Mining)
Technology giant ABB will deliver automation, electrification and instrumentation solutions for the Hydrogen Energy Supply Chain (HESC) pilot project at Port of Hastings, Victoria. The project aims to produce clean hydrogen in Australian and transport it to Japan, in one of the first attempts in the world to use technology to liquefy and transport hydrogen. ABB has been awarded contracts in both Australia and Japan, including electrification and instrumentation in Australia and an automation contract from Kawasaki Heavy Industries in Japan. In Australia, ABB will supply electrical equipment for the new hydrogen liquefaction and loading terminal at Port of Hastings, where hydrogen gas produced by brown coal gasification at Latrobe Valley will be liquefied and stored.  FULL STORY

PORT OTAGO FAILED SAFETY STANDARDS OVER GROUNDED SHIP
Source: RNZ
An inquiry has found Port Otago did not meet industry safety standards for monitoring when a container ship grounded on a channel bank. Last June, ship Leda Maersk grounded while entering Port Otago under the direction of a harbour pilot onboard. The Transport Accident Investigation Commission said its final inquiry report repeated lessons from a from a similar incident at the harbour two years earlier. The Commission found the pilot and bridge team didn't recognise the ship was off course. "They primarily used visual cues outside the ship, not the electronic navigation aids, all of which clearly showed the ship deviating from the planned track," the report said.  FULL STORY

PACIFIC PORTS JOIN AUSTRALIAN NETWORK AMID GROWING CHINESE PRESENCE IN REGION
Source: Hellenic Shipping News
Five major Pacific ports have joined an Australian alliance to boost industry investment and trade amid growing international concerns over Beijing’s presence and influence in the region. The ports, which include Fiji Ports Corporation, Samoa Ports Authority and the Solomon Islands Ports Authority, have signed up as external associate members of peak industry group Ports Australia to formalise maritime sector ties across the region. Lyttleton Port Company, the largest port in the South Island of New Zealand, and the Port of Napier in the North Island have also signed on in what Ports Australia chief executive Mike Gallacher labelled “a massive step forward” in connecting the sector across the region.  FULL STORY

OIL SEARCH CUTS OUTLOOK AS PNG PROBLEMS RESURFACE
Source: Glenn Dyer (ShareCafe)
More problems for Oil Search in Papua New Guinea. Twenty months ago it was a massive earthquake in western PNG that cut production and sales of gas (and LNG) and oil. After a recovery this year revenue and earnings gradually improved in comparison to 2018. But damage to a ship mooring system in August saw exports restricted as a 24% slide in revenue for the three months to September. That, in turn, has caused the company to cut its 2019 production guidance. At the same time Oil Search has also reduced 2019 capital spending by about 15%, due to delays in securing agreements with the PNG government.  FULL STORY

TWO SHIP CELEBRATION FOR PORT VILA FIRST TIME TWO LARGE CRUISE SHIPS BERTH ON SAME DAY
Source: Mirage News
Princess Cruises’ mega-liner Majestic Princess made her maiden visit to Port Vila Tuesday, 22 October alongside P&O Cruises’ Pacific Aria - a special ‘two ship celebration’ for the city. The day marked a major milestone – it is the first time two large cruise ships have berthed in Vila on the same day. And the ships brought about 5000 guests to the city. At 143,700 gross tonnes and carrying 3,560 guests, Majestic Princess is the largest and newest ship in the Princess Cruises’ fleet in this region and now also holds the mantle of being the largest ship to berth at Main Wharf.  FULL STORY

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