News & Media

19 February, 2021

Australian Newsletter - Issue 666

IMO SYMPOSIUM HIGHLIGHTS PATHWAYS TO SHIPPING’S DECARBONIZATION
Source: MirageNews.com
Various low- and zero-carbon marine fuels will allow shipping to meet its emissions targets, but more work is needed to address availability, safety and other issues. The state-of-play of low and zero-carbon fuel options to ensure shipping’s path to decarbonization was set out in an online symposium hosted by the International Maritime Organization (IMO) on 9-10 February 2021. Speakers from industry and Governments outlined the different fuel options available to owners and operators which will allow the maritime sector to meet targets set out in the Initial IMO Strategy on reduction of GHG emissions from ships.  FULL STORY

ASX IRON ORE COMPANIES FENIX AND TOMBADOR ADVANCE TOWARDS FIRST SHIPMENTS
Source: Peter Sand (Bimco)
In the full year of 2020, global container shipping volumes fell by 1.2% compared with 2019, much less than feared even before the pandemic was first declared, and much recovered compared with the 6.8% drop recorded in the first six months of the year. Volumes in the second half of the year were up 4.2% from 2019. Much of this growth was concentrated on just a few trade lanes, with congestion and imbalances on these spilling out and causing disruption on other trades. BIMCO expects that 2021 will be even better for container shipping than 2020, as the current backlog will take months to clear and carriers are using the current strength of the market to lock in long-term contract rates for the coming 12 months at higher levels than in 2020.  FULL STORY

IMO AND WISTA LAUNCH WOMEN IN MARITIME SURVEY
Source: Jason Jiang (Splash247)
The International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the Women’s International Shipping & Trading Association (WISTA) have launched the first ever survey for the examination of the proportion and distribution of women working in the maritime sector. The International Maritime Organization (IMO) and the Women’s International Shipping & Trading Association (WISTA) have launched the first ever survey for the examination of the proportion and distribution of women working in the maritime sector. 
“Diversity in maritime matters.  FULL STORY

CONTAINER CHAOS AS COVID, INDUSTRIAL ACTION, WEATHER CAUSE 'PERFECT STORM' FOR IMPORT AND EXPORT DELAYS
Source: Lachlan Bennett, Fiona Breen, Laurissa Smith and Kellie Lazarro (ABC News)
A perfect storm of events is causing big delays to international shipping and pushing up the costs to get goods in and out of Australia. The pandemic caused havoc to the flow of goods across the globe, with shutdowns, booming ecommerce, the collapse of air travel, industrial action and a shipping container shortage leading to higher freight prices and delays. A major fish feed producer is struggling to get key ingredients amid the "constant and increasing challenge" of international shipping.  FULL STORY

BULK BUYS: IRON ORE PRICES STAY ELEVATED, DEMAND OUTLOOK STARTING TO IMPROVE FOR COKING COAL
Source: Mike Cooper (Stockhead)
The immediate outlook for iron ore is still robust with the spot price at $US166 per tonne ($212.75/tonne) as cargo trading slowed to a crawl for China’s Lunar New Year holiday.
“Iron ore prices have been elevated since the Brumadinho tailings dam tragedy in Brazil first disrupted the market in early 2019,” said BHP in an earnings report this week. The Australian iron ore shipper said its analysis of the seaborne market suggested that for a price correction to happen either Chinese demand or Brazilian supply would have to change “materially”. FULL STORY 

WA’S 2020 WINTER CROP EXCEEDS EXPECTATIONS AT 16.6 MILLION TONNES
Source: Grain Central
THE most defining aspect around the 2020 Western Australian grain growing season was the 16.6 million tonnes (Mt) grown on very little rain, according to the Grain Industry Association of WA’s (GIWA) latest crop report. Many areas grew above average tonnage on well below average growing season rainfall. The total grain production in the state was a fraction behind 2013 (16.9Mt) and not far short of the record years of 2016 (18.1Mt) and 2018 (17.9Mt). The result was exceptional considering the below average rainfall for most of the grain growing regions of WA.  FULL STORY

VICT STRIKES ARE ATTACKING AUTOMATION
Source: PortStrategy.com
A series of planned strikes at ICTSI’s Victoria International Container Terminal (VICT) at the Port of Melbourne is an attack on its automated status, VICT’s CEO has said. The Maritime Union of Australia (MUA) has planned a four-hour strike on Tuesday 16 February, a 12 hour strike from 6pm on Friday 19 February, and a 36 hour strike from 6am on Sunday 21 February. Industrial action also includes a series of work bans, including on working overtime. Tim Vancampen, CEO of VICT, said: “VICT accounts for a third of Victoria’s container freight. The union is directly attacking VICT’s unique way of working as a modern, automated terminal.  FULL STORY

FREIGHT VICTORIA EMBARKS ON CONTAINER MANAGEMENT PROBE
Source: ATN
State government body Freight Victoria is to look into empty container management capacity and supply chain issues in Melbourne. The move comes as the system faces a period of industrial relations disruption at Victoria International Container Terminal (VICT), with the possibility of a new layer of disruption on an already heavily stretched system. It is understood Freight Victoria has engaged consultancy firm NineSquared to conduct the study, which follows the commitment of the state government to ensure that its proposed Voluntary Performance Monitoring Framework for container trade through the Port of Melbourne covers all parts of the Melbourne container supply chain.  FULL STORY  

BUMPER GRAIN HARVEST NEEDS BIGGER TRUCKS, SAYS PEAK BODY
Source: Andrew Miller (Bendigo Advertiser)
The head of Victoria's peak freight transport body is urging the state government to open up more routes to high productivity vehicles, particularly during this year's bumper grain harvest. Victorian Transport Association chief executive Peter Anderson made the call as ABARES predicts Victoria's winter crop production will be the highest on record. Mr Anderson said trucks had been held up for up to 10 hours at the Geelong port, as operators tried to unload to waiting grain ships. "There's been a grain ship tied up at the wharf in Geelong, every day for the past two months," Mr Anderson said.  FULL STORY

QUEENSLAND PACIFIC METALS EXECUTES MOU WITH PORT OF TOWNSVILLE FOR TECH PROJECT ACCESS
Source: Deepak Sharma (ProactiveInvestors.com.au)
The Port of Townsville has confirmed that there will be sufficient capacity available for the company to import up to 1.5 million tonnes of ore per annum and to export TECH Project production. Queensland Pacific Metals Ltd (ASX:QPM) (FRA:4EA) has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Port of Townsville Limited (POTL) regarding port access for the TECH Project. Under the MoU, the Port of Townsville confirms that there is sufficient capacity available for QPM to import up to 1.5 million tonnes of ore per annum and to export requisite production associated with this volume of ore. FULL STORY

PORT OF TOWNSVILLE: CAR IMPORTS MOTORING ON
Source: Hellenic Shipping News
New car sales are surging across northern Australia with the Port of Townsville recording its highest motor vehicle import figures in history last quarter. Almost 6,000 vehicles arrived through the Port between October and December 2020, and October fell just six cars shy of the Port’s biggest month on record with 2,245 cars being discharged that month. Port of Townsville Manager Trade Development, Maria James, said the hike in Townsville vehicle imports last quarter was in line with national car sale trends. “We experienced some downturn in early 2020 due to manufacturing backlogs in Japan, which contributed to larger import numbers towards the second half of the year as the industry began to recover,” Ms James said.  FULL STORY

PORT TARANAKI HALF-YEARLY RESULTS 'PLEASING', BUT REPAIRS WILL AFFECT FULL-YEAR PROFIT
Source: Mike Watson (Stuff.co.nz)
Port Taranaki has warned that the removal of buildings containing asbestos will have an impact on its full-year profits. The Taranaki Regional Council-owned company recorded an improved result for the first half of 2020-2021, but increased repairs and maintenance costs associated with removing buildings at the port, plus “challenging” second-half trading conditions, would have an effect, Port Taranaki chief executive Guy Roper said. The company recorded a net profit of $5.46m to December 30, 2020, up 3 per cent from $5.31m for the half-yearly period in 2019.  FULL STORY

NZ DEBACLE SEES PONANT SHIFT FOCUS TO AUSTRALIA WITH EIGHT VOYAGES IN 2021
Source: Dan Satherley (News Hub) 
After being forced to cancel its cruise season in New Zealand, Ponant has announced the return of Le Lapérouse and Le Soléal to Australian waters this year. The cruise line has unveiled a new collection of eight immersive ‘must-do’ itineraries featuring the Western Australian, South Australian, Tasmanian, New South Wales, and Queensland coasts. Each itinerary will showcase diversity of wilderness, wildlife, heritage, and cultural encounters found along Australia’s coastline.  FULL STORY

CRANES CALLED IN TO STABILISE SHIPPING CONTAINERS AT CHRISTCHURCH KIWIRAIL YARD
Source: Tom Dillane (NZHerald.co.nz)
A cylindrical tank of cement hanging "perilously" on top of bulk LPG cylinders in a KiwiRail yard in Christchurch has been moved to safety by two large cranes after the emergency drew the majority of the city's firefighters. Five fire crews and around 30 firefighters are at the KiwiRail container yard on Matipo St, Riccarton, Christchurch. Police also evacuated some nearby properties. Christchurch fire and emergency shift manager Riwai Grace says they are not sure what happened Saturday morning to cause the dangerous repositioning of the container they were alerted to at 8.30am.  FULL STORY

SOLOMON ISLANDS: SHIP CREW ACCUSED OF DUMPING 1,000 TONNES OF OIL IN SEA
Source: The Guardian
A bulk carrier ship has deliberately dumped about 1,000 tonnes of oil into the sea off the coast of the Solomon Islands, government authorities have alleged. The Panama-flagged MV Quebec, which was in the Solomons carrying a logging shipment for a Chinese company, is accused of discharging heavy fuel oil into Graciosa Bay in Temotu province in late January. The premier of Temotu, Clay Forau, said he believed ships regularly deliberately polluted Solomons Islands waters. “Its obvious these ships go around breaking our laws on sea pollution all the time,” Forau told the Guardian. “The only difference is they got caught this time.”  FULL STORY

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