DryShips divests final tankers

NASDAQ-listed DryShips has sold its remaining six tankers to founder and chief executive officer George Economou, concluding a sale process that began in March.
On 30 June, DryShips confirmed that Economou exercised his options to purchase six Aframaxes – the Alicante, Belmar, Calida, Daytona ,

Two more rigs booked at Huangpu Wenchong

China’s Huangpu Wenchong shipbuilding yard has been contracted to build a further pair of jack-up rigs from a returning customer. Hong Kong-listed TSC Group has ordered, through it daughter company Alliance Offshore Drilling (AOD), two Zentech-designed R-550D jack-up drilling rigs with deliveries

Lim Ki-tack Named New IMO Secretary General

By Kathryn Stone 2015-06-30 11:57:27

Lim Ki-tack, president of the Busan Port Authority in South Korea, has been elected the new Secretary-General of the IMO.

Today’s decision was passed down by a secret ballet vote of the 40-member IMO Council, which is holding its 114 session this week. Lim beat out five other candidates from Cyprus, Russia, Philippines, Denmark and Kenya for the position.

He is the second South Korean candidate to vie for the IMO’s top position, but the first to win the election.

Lim has spent nearly four decades working in various segments of the maritime industry. In his early career he worked as a commercial mariner for Sanko Shipping Co. and as a Korean naval officer. He joined the Maritime Port Administration in 1985, while pursuing post-graduate studies.

He holds a bachelor degree in nautical science as well as masters’ degrees in business administration and maritime administration. In addition, he has completed graduate course work in international law at the Korea Maritime and Ocean University.

Lim began attending IMO meetings as part of the South Korean delegation in 1986. He was named the Chairman of the Sub-Committee on Flag State Implementation (FSI) from 2002 to 2004. Lim served a three-year tenure as the Deputy Permanent Representative to the IMO starting in 2006. While serving in this capacity, he was in charge of all IMO work for South Korea.

Lim was subsequently named Director General for Maritime Safety Policy Bureau at the Headquarters of the Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs (MLTM) and appointed to the role of Commissioner of the Korean Maritime Safety Tribunal (KMST).

In July of 2012 assumed his current position as the President of Busan Port Authority.

Lim is set to begin his four year term January 1, 2016, replacing incumbent Secretary-General Koji Sekimizu​​​​​​.


Calais Port Strike Enters Second Day

By Reuters 2015-06-30 09:50:16

Employees of the MyFerryLink ferry service, recently sold by Eurotunnel, maintained their blockade of the northern French port of Calais for a second day on Tuesday after a court rejected their bid to extend a charter contract with Eurotunnel.

Workers at the ferry service are trying to prevent job cuts after their company was sold to a Danish firm earlier this month. It is the second time they have shut the tunnel in less than a week, causing chaos for trucking firms and holidaymakers.

MyFerryLink was previously owned by Eurotunnel, the company that operates the undersea cross-Channel rail link.

Protesting ferry workers forced the closure of the Channel Tunnel linking France and England on Tuesday, blocking its entrance and setting fire to tires thrown onto railway tracks.

“The blockade is in place,” trade unionist Eric Vercoutre of the MyFerryLink works council, told reporters.

“We want to make the French, British and Belgian governments understand that if a solution isn’t found to save our 600 jobs, there will be a lot of disruption this summer.

“When the mobilization ramps up, we’ll block everything, which could disrupt Eurotunnel,” he warned.

Eurotunnel said on its website: “Our passenger service is temporarily suspended due to a breach of our terminal boundaries.”

Strike action by around 400 workers last week caused major traffic jams of trucks.

Calais is a magnet for migrants, many from troubled parts of Africa, the Middle East and South Asia, who use it as a jumping-off point to try to get across to Britain. The chaos of the past week has seen an increase in attempts to stow away on trucks heading across the Channel.

A Reuters reporter in Calais saw dozens of lorries jammed up on the motorway leading to the port on Tuesday. Strikers barred access to the port, which looked largely empty inside. Just three passenger cars were waiting at customs.

“This is not a very nice thing to happen to us,” Stanley Shakespeare, a retired Londoner, said as he and his wife tried to head home after a holiday in Spain.

“We love France and we love the French people, who are very nice, but as we got here today I may change my mind.”

Eurotunnel in June agreed to sell its Calais-to-Dover ferry business to Denmark’s DFDS to end a lengthy battle with British competition authorities.

SCOP Sea France, the co-operative of workers that runs the ferries, asked a commercial court to extend its contract with Eurotunnel and prevent it from being dissolved after the sale. The court on Monday rejected that request.

DFDS, which is set to take over operation of the ferries on July 2, has pledged to keep 202 out of 577 workers, a level the union sees as unacceptable.

The ferry workers had initially tried to buy the business of operating the two ferries from Eurotunnel themselves but failed.


Samsung Heavy Awarded $888m Johan Svendrup Contract

By MarEx 2015-06-30 09:24:26

Norwegian oil major Statoil has awarded Samsung Heavy Industries an $888 million contract for two platform decks on the giant Johan Sverdrup field in the North Sea, it said on Tuesday.

The contract includes fabrication of decks for both the process and riser platforms for the Sverdrup field, a discovery with up to 3 billion barrels of oil equivalents that will cost as much as $28 billion to develop fully.

The function of the process platform, which weighs approx. 26,000 tons, is to ensure stabilization of the oil and processing into rich gas.

The riser platform, which weighs approx. 22,000 tons, will serve oil and gas exports, water and gas injection, as well as any future connections. The power cable from onshore also ends at this platform, where the current is transformed from direct current into alternating current for further distribution to the field center.

The platform deck will be manufactured at the Samsung’s shipyard in South Korea.

According to Margareth Margareth Oevrum, executive vice president for Technology, projects and drilling at Statoil, Samsung was chosen for the contract because of its extensive manufacturing experience with similar types of installations. It also reportedly provided a competitive bid from a host of other international companies vying for the contract.

Other competitors for the platform deck contracts included Korea’s Hyundai Heavy Industries and Daewoo Shipbuilding, Upstream reported in May.

With this latest award, all contracts for the four platform decks have been awarded. The decks for the drilling platform and accommodation platform have already been awarded to Aibel (EPC) and Kværner Stord (EPC). In addition, 65% of the equipment packages have so far been awarded to suppliers with Norwegian billing addresses.

Sverdrup, Europe’s costliest offshore energy project, could give a boost to Norway’s declining oil industry.

Øivind Reinertsen, project director of Johan Sverdrup field development emphasized the importance of the project saying, “Johan Sverdrup will be of major significance to the whole of society for at least 50 years into the future.”

Statoil has been recommended as operator of the field by the other partners including Lundin Petroleum, Petoro, Det norske and Maersk Oil, a unit under Denmark’s A.P. Moeller-Maersk.


Ferry strike adds to Greek woes

Ferry services in Greece are being disrupted today as the result of a 24-hour strike called by the Pan-Hellenic Seamen’s Federation (PNO). The union claims that some shipping firms have violated collective labour agreements.
PNO has called on seafarers aboard Greek-flagged ferries to take