Seacurus Daily: Top Ten Maritime News Stories 16/07/2015
1. Seafarer Shortage Rattles Maersk
A short of quality crew remains a major concern for shipowners and operators according to a senior executive from Maersk Tankers. “Shipowners and operators are constantly looking for quality crew,” Santosh Khosla, global head of manning offices for Maersk Tankers, told the Maritime Manpower Singapore conference on Thursday. “The to options to recruit quality crew remain limited.” In the case of just tanker fleet Khosla said there was an estimated shortage of 16,000 officers. “For any shipping company building a pool of high quality seafarers is a challenge.” Even once a pool of quality crew is built up retention remains an issue.
2. Iranian Insurance Ban Set to End
A ban on shipping insurance that has restricted the transport of Iranian oil, petrochemicals and natural gas products for about three years will be lifted as a result of the final agreement reached Tuesday between Iran and six world powers, the Japan Ship Owners’ Mutual Protection & Indemnity Association said. The association would be able to issue reinsurance to Japanese shipowners for carrying Iranian oil immediately after sanctions are lifted. Japan P&I Club said in a statement: "It is clearly intended that all UN Security Council sanctions as well as multilateral and national sanctions related to Iran’s nuclear program will be lifted.
3. Iranian Fleet Set for Business
Iran’s oil-shipping giant National Iranian Tankers Company (NITC) is ready to make a comeback on the European and international markets as soon as possible following a deal on lifting of nuclear sanctions agreed upon on Tuesday between Iran and the six world powers in Vienna, a company official confirmed. Under the deal, sanctions against Iran’s oil export industry are to be lifted in exchange for additional restrains on the country’s nuclear program. The agreement is expected to boost the country’s oil exports and pave the way for its tankers to be unleashed into the market. “Iranian tankers will return to European and international markets".
4. Dispute Ship Departure Delayed
The departure of a Caltex fuel tanker delayed in Tasmania because of an industrial dispute has been pushed back to Thursday morning. The Alexander Spirit was due to leave Devonport on Wednesday night and crew were awaiting orders to sail. They had been told that upon reaching Singapore they will lose their jobs because the ship was being set up to import fuel into Australia rather than make coastal deliveries. That led to the Australian tanker crew members refusing to leave. However, Operator Teekay Shipping said it was still trying to find a cook and that a crew shortage was delaying departure to Singapore, rather than any continued industrial action on board.
5. Pirate Release is Cause for Concern
The release of Somali pirates from Kenyan prisons has sparked concerns about where they are likely to go next. Fourteen of the 164 Somali pirates currently serving time in Kenya prisons are to be released and repatriated next month. They follow 64 others recently sent back to Somalia after completing their terms. There are fears, however, that the released pirates might not go back to Somalia but may settle with other Somalis in Kenya instead. Experts believe releasing them with no clear rehabilitation plan raises concern. We are likely to see them going back to sea in the near future. Pirates find it hard to retire because of the debts they accrued."
6. Fatal Offshore Accident
DOF Management has confirmed that there was a fatal incident on board the AHTS Skandi Pacific on Tuesday, 175 Kilometers off the West Australian Coast. The company has not provided details of the accident, but stated that operations were suspended immediately. The emergency response team was mobilized, and the vessel is now on its way back to port. DOF issued a statement saying: “People’s safety and the welfare of their families is our priority. We are doing everything we can to support the families and other crew members. The Skandi Pacific will be met by DOF representatives and a team of professional counsellors to offer support and care for the crew on board.
7. Programme to Encourage Marine Engineers
The Singapore Maritime Officers’ Union (SMOU) has introduced a new programme to encourage Singaporeans to pursue careers as marine engineers. Having worked for years to address the shortage of Singaporean seafarers, the SMOU and its training arm, Wavelink Maritime Institute, will team up with the government and industry partners to launch the Tripartite Engineering Training Award (TETA) Programme in the upcoming months. This is also a place-and-train initiative, similar to the Tripartite Nautical Training Award (TNTA) for seafarers. The TETA Programme was launched at the biennial Maritime Manpower Singapore event on 16 July.
8. World’s Biggest Semi-Sub Crane
Sembcorp Marine (SCM) says it has entered into a $1 billion contract with Heerema Offshore Services for the engineering and construction of the world’s largest semi-submersible crane vessel. The new DP3, dual fuel crane vessel will be designed for the installation and decommissioning of major offshore facilities worldwide, and will be equipped with two Huisman offshore cranes with 10,000 MT of lifting capacity each. The vessel will measure 220 meters by 102 meters and displace 273,700 MT, which will give it the title of world’s largest semi-submersible crane vessel. Delivery is expected in the fourth quarter of 2018.
9. Shipping Giant Prepares to Float
German container shipping group Hapag-Lloyd is speeding up preparations for an initial public offering (IPO) and has picked Deutsche Bank, Goldman Sachs and Berenberg to lead the transaction, two people familiar with the matter said. A flotation of a minority stake could value the world’s fourth-largest shipping group at more than 5 billion euros ($5.5 billion) and could take place as early as autumn, Dow Jones reported earlier on Wednesday. Hapag Lloyd and the banks declined to comment. Europe’s largest tourism group TUI, which holds 13.9 percent in Hapag, has stressed in the past that it wants to sell its stake in the event of an IPO.
10. Big Yards to Share Eco Patents
South Korean shipbuilding majors have decided to share their patents with smaller local counterparts as a way of helping them develop the capability to build eco-friendly ships. Namely, Hyundai Heavy Industries Co. (HHI), Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering Co. (DSME), and Samsung Heavy Industries Co. (SHI) will open about 2,500 patents, which will be managed by a new innovation centre in the southeastern industrial city of Ulsan, Yonhap news agency reported. The announcement comes as the international maritime community pushes for cutting of pollution from ships by introduction of innovative shipbuilding technology.
Daily news feed from Seacurus Ltd – providers of MLC crew insurance solutions www.seacurus.com
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