Elmer Morley, MPT Founder, Passes at 85

By MarEx 2015-08-19 15:48:21

Maritime Professional Training’s founder, Elmer Morley, and father to Lisa Morley, Ted Morley and Amy Beavers, passed away from pancreatic cancer on August 17th. Each of his children hold prominent positions at MPT.

Morley was a chief engineering instructor at Maritime Professional Training, which he founded in 1983. MPT is one of the largest privately held maritime training facilities in the U.S. and consistently trains over 10,000 students annually.

He was also a father, grandfather, great grandfather, and loving husband to Beverly. The Morley family will honor its patriarch on August 22nd at a public service at Rio Vista Community Church, located at 880 S. Federal Hwy in Fort Lauderdale at 2 PM on Saturday, August 22nd. All are welcome to join in honoring his life and legacy.


GoM Rigs Drawing Little Interest

By Reuters 2015-08-19 14:43:40

A U.S. government sale of oil and gas drilling leases in the western Gulf of Mexico attracted the lowest number of bids on record on Wednesday as slumping oil prices kept producers from plowing money into expensive offshore prospects.

The yearly sale, held by the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM), attracted $22.7 million in high bids, the smallest in the western Gulf since 1983 when leases were first broken down into regions, the BOEM said, reaping just one fifth of the value of last year’s offers.

“The continuing drop in oil prices and low natural gas prices obviously affect industry’s short-term investment decisions,” BOEM Director Abigail Ross Hopper said in a statement, also stressing the long term potential of Gulf of Mexico oil and gas production.

“While this sale reflects today’s market conditions…it underscores a steady, continued interest in developing deep water federal offshore oil and gas resources.”

U.S. oil prices have slumped over the past year due to oversupply, from over $107 a barrel in June 2014 to $40 on Wednesday, denting oil producers’ profits and leading to thousands of industry job cuts. Even cheaper onshore developments have stalled as companies reassess their yearly budgets.

In Wednesday’s sale, five companies submitted 33 bids on 33 tracts covering 190,080 acres (76,923 hectares) in the western region, BOEM said.

Australia’s BHP Billiton was the most active with 26 bids. BP made one bid, Colombia’s Ecopetrol made four, three of which were made jointly with Anadarko Petroleum, and Houston-based Peregrine Oil and Gas made two.

Last year saw 93 bids on 81 tracts totaling $110 million in high bids. In 2012, when oil prices fluctuated between $100 and $80 a barrel, there were 131 bids on 116 tracts, with high bids hitting $133 million, a BOEM spokesman said.


Traffickers Arrested in Migrant Deaths

By MarEx 2015-08-19 14:15:12

Italian police have arrested eight human traffickers for the deaths of 49 migrants aboard a fishing vessel in the Mediterranean. The dead were discovered August 15. Officials say they were suffocated by engine fumes. The ship’s remaining 312 survivors were transported to Catania.

The traffickers are from Libya, Morocco and Syria and they will face homicide and illegal immigration charges. The migrants told authorities the traffickers prevented them from leaving the ship by beating them and kept them captive in the vessel’s hold.

Illegal migration in the Mediterranean has become an epidemic for the EU, especially Italy. More than 200 migrants were killed earlier this month when their fishing vessel capsized. The International Organization for Migration reported that more than 2,300 have died this year fleeing Africa.

The EU’s Migration and Home Affairs ministry recently said it will provide aid to member countries hardest hit by the wave of migrants. Officials expect to provide at least $33.4 million soon.

Meanwhile, Greek officials intend on meeting with EU representatives about how best to use the $528 million in aid it has received to integrate migrants into its population.


Korean Yards in Recession

By MarEx 2015-08-19 14:06:22

About thirteen executives of Daewoo Shipping & Marine Engineering (DSME) in South Korea have resigned following record Q2 losses. CEO Ko Jae-ho is among the resignations, but the company’s seven-member board was not affected.

DSME is the world’s second largest shipbuilder and reported a loss of more than $2 billion in Q2 2015. Its primary shareholder is Korea Development Bank, which is reevaluating its position. The shipbuilder intends to sell non-core assets to improve its shipbuilding competitiveness.

Meanwhile, Hyundai Heavy Industries (HHI) and Samsung Heavy Industries (SHI) are also facing financial difficulties. Hyundai reported a $2.5 billion Q2 loss and Samsung reported a $1.2 billion loss. The Big Three South Korea yards plan to lay off about 3,000 employees this year.

The DSME board has accepted the voluntary resignations and is said to be advising others to resign. The company will release about 1,300 senior management staff before 2016.

HHI has already revamped its senior management team and the company has released about 31 percent of its senior staff in 2014 and this July it replaced 25 executives.

The yards mostly attribute losses to delays in the construction of oil and gas rigs.


New Zealand ports battle for business

Ports of Auckland (POAL) has detailed plans to take on major competitor Port of Tauranga’s (POT) catchment in the Bay of Plenty region.
Timing its news just 24 hours ahead of the release of POT’s annual results, POAL revealed that its third inland port will be located right on POT’s doorstep at Mt