South Korea Thinks Big on LNG Bunkering

By Reuters 2015-07-15 17:02:15

South Korea plans to build LNG bunkering terminals at some of its ports as part of a drive to dominate the market for building ships fuelled by both oil and gas.

The energy ministry in the world’s biggest shipbuilder said it hoped to win 70 percent of global orders for duel-fuel tankers by 2025.

LNG-fuelled tanker and LNG bunkering markets are expected to grow rapidly in Europe and China as restrictions on greenhouse gas emissions boost interest in cleaner fuels such as gas.

The ministry said in a statement that it expected the international market for manufacturing LNG-fuelled ships and modifying other vessels to take LNG to soar to a value of nearly 150 trillion won ($130 billion) in around a decade from six trillion won now.

“From a long-term perspective, we will build LNG bunkering terminals at the country’s major ports where large vessels arrive and depart,” the ministry said on Wednesday.

The government plans to add an LNG bunkering terminal to a public gas terminal in the city of Tongyeong, about 370 kilometres south of Seoul, by 2017 with similar facilities in the cities of Gwangyang, Boryeong and Incheon later.

The world’s second-largest LNG importer also plans to start running bunkering shuttles from vessels carrying LNG to those that need it as fuel in 2018.

South Korea’s Hyundai Heavy Industries, Samsung Heavy Industries and Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering are the world’s top three shipbuilders.

($1 = 1,141.1500 won)


First for Non-Russian Arctic Cruise Vessel

By MarEx 2015-07-15 16:50:18

Last week history was made as Poseidon Expedition successfully carried out a direct crossing between Svalbard and Franz Josef Land and back again. This route shortens the sailing distance between Svalbard and Russia considerably more than when sailing via mainland Russia. It is a cruise many Arctic operators plan to organize as soon as Russian authorities give general authorization.

Poseidon Expeditions’ Sea Spirit received the first permit to cruise into the territorial waters of Franz Josef Land without initially calling at a mainland Russian port.

The unprecedented voyage began July 3 in Longyearbyen, Svalbard, and headed into the Russian High Arctic a few days later, navigating northeast through seasonal sea ice. The authorization was granted July 8, marking the first occasion in history that a non-Russian, foreign-flag vessel entered Franz Josef Land territorial waters without first stopping in a large port such as Murmansk or Arkhangelsk.

The current voyage, with 106 passengers and invited guests aboard, is scheduled to make stops at Alexandra Land, Northbrook Island, Hooker Island, Rudolf Island, Champ Island and other historic or wildlife-significant areas of the uninhabited polar archipelago, sea ice permitting.

The region consists of nearly 200 islands, with much of the terrain covered with glaciers. The archipelago served as a jumping-off point for notable attempts to reach the North Pole during the Heroic Era of polar exploration in the decades of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.

Nikolay Saveliev, president of Poseidon Expeditions, was pleased and excited to be aboard for the occasion. “A lot of behind-the-scenes effort by many employees and shipboard staff went into this achievement,” he said. “Speaking as both a company official and as a passenger, I truly appreciate the hard work that everyone put forward to make this happen, all designed to give our guests a truly unique polar expeditionary experience that was previously unattainable.”

Saveliev also commended the Russian authorities for their cooperation in making the “incredible polar landscape of Franz Josef Land more readily accessible to visitors.”

Sea Spirit was built in 1991 as Renaissance V, then sailed for a decade in Alaska and worldwide as Spirit of Oceanus. The ship underwent technical improvements for polar cruising in 2010, and has been providing expedition cruises in the Arctic and Antarctic under its current name the past five years.


Rescue of 13 Migrant Boats off Libya

By Reuters 2015-07-15 15:40:04

Around 2,700 migrants were rescued from 13 boats near the coast of Libya on Wednesday, Italy’s coastguard said.

A German navy vessel and a search and rescue ship deployed by medical charity Medecins Sans Frontieres participated in the rescues along with the Italian navy and coastguard.

A spokeswoman for the Italian coastguard said the rescues had all been carried out in an area around 35 miles (55 km) from the coast of Libya.

An estimated 150,000 migrants have reached Europe by sea so far in 2015, most of them in Greece and Italy, the International Organization for Migration said. More than 1,900 migrants have drowned in the Mediterranean, twice the toll during the same period last year, said spokesman Joel Millman.

The United Nations refugee agency said on Friday that Greece urgently needed help to cope with 1,000 migrants arriving each day.

The vast majority of the migrants fleeing war and poverty in Africa and the Middle East depart from Libya, where human traffickers have taken advantage of a breakdown in order to build up a lucrative business. (Reporting by Isla Binnie; Editing by Ros Russell)


Box shippers seek improved port metrics

Better data on port terminal dwell times could be used by box lines to pressure terminals into making their gates more efficient, according to US importers.
The suggestion was revealed in a US Federal Maritime Commission staff report on US container port congestion, released on 14 July.
The report