Ports & Ships Maritime News

May 3, 2007
Author: P&S




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TODAY’S BULLETIN OF MARITIME NEWS

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  • SA Agulhas sailing to assist stricken yacht


  • COSCO and Evergreen beef up Red Sea – Asia service


  • DoT names Port Regulator Board members


  • Nigeria seeks seat on IMO


  • Rwanda wants rail connections with region


  • Pic of the day – AURORA PRIDE





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    SA Agulhas sailing to assist stricken yacht

    The South African Antarctic research vessel SA AGULHAS was expected to rendezvous last night with the Australian yacht Cowrie Dancer, which lost its mizzen mast about 700 nautical miles southeast of Port Elizabeth (refer our news report of yesterday, 2 May).

    One of the crew, Australian John Blackman is reported to have fallen overboard and is feared drowned. Two other crew members, both Australians, received serious injuries, with the skipper of the yacht suffering a broken leg and his crew member an injured hip.

    A South African woman on board the yacht, Carol Erasmus from Uvongo on the KZN South Coast was not injured. She is an experienced yachtswoman who had boarded the yacht in Cape Town to help gain sea time for her skippers ticket.

    The yacht, which was on a round the world cruise following the southern latitudes, was experiencing mountainous seas with swells up to eight metres when the mast broke. A mayday signal was broadcast and picked up by Australian search and rescue which relayed the message to South Africa’s Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre (MRCC) near Cape Town, asking for assistance.

    The MRCC in turn requested the SA Agulhas at Marion Island to proceed to the scene and render assistance. The South African ship was due to link up with the yacht last night (Wednesday).

    Cowrie Dancer sailed from Cape Town early last week bound for Western Australia.



    COSCO and Evergreen beef up Red Sea – Asia service

    Cosco and Evergreen Line intend complementing their existing joint Far East – Red Sea service with an additional Malacca Straits – Red Sea Shuttle service as from the middle of this month.

    The additional service which will involve four ships of 1200-TEU capacity will operate on the following 28-day rotation: Singapore – Port of Tanjung Pelepas – Jeddah – Port Sudan – Hodeidah – Singapore.

    The new service has become necessary to provide additional capacity over important hubs such as Singapore and the Port of Tanjung Pelepas in Malaysia during the peak season.

    Cosco and Evergreen Line will each provide two ships to the shuttle.



    DoT names Port Regulator Board members

    South Africa’s Transport Minister Jeff Radebe yesterday announced the names of Board members appointed to the National Ports Regulator.

    The Regulator, established in terms of the National Ports Act, 2005, Act 12 of 2005, held its inaugural meeting on 28 March 2007 in Cape Town.

    The Department of Transport (DoT) said yesterday that the role of the Regulator is very crucial, not only in developing the ports system in South Africa, but for the overall growth and economic development of South Africa.

    “Its primary function will be the economic regulation of the ports system in line with government’s strategic objectives, to promote equity of access to ports and to monitor the activities of the Ports Authority to ensure that it performs its functions in accordance with the Act.

    “The Regulator will also be responsible for the promotion of regulated competition, hearing of appeals and complaints and the investigation of such complaints.”

    The DoT said that the process of appointing a Chief Executive Officer is also underway, and will be followed by the appointment of the rest of the staff complement.

    The Board Members of the Regulator are:

  • Ms Gloria Serobe. Chairperson; An Accountant with extensive experience in investment and merchant banking


  • Mr Andrew Pike. Non-Executive Director: A Lawyer with extensive maritime experience


  • Dr Brian Gowans. Non-Executive Director: An Engineer and maritime architect


  • Ms Thandiwe Njobe. Non-Executive Director: An Economist with extensive experience in transaction management


  • Ms Phumzile Langeni. Non-Executive Director: An Economic analyst and investment strategist


  • Mr Randall Howard. Non-Executive Director: A Labour Relations expert


  • Ms Ella Ntshabela. Non-Executive Director: with expertise in accounting, auditing and financial management


  • Professor Doug Blackmur. Non-Executive Director: An Academic and Economist with experience in international ports management


  • Mr Mawethu Vilana. Non-Executive Director: (ex officio member representing DoT). A Freight Logistics Strategy specialist




  • Nigeria seeks seat on IMO

    Nigeria has stated its intention of regaining a seat on the International Maritime Organisation’s (IMO) governing body by submitting an application as a contestant in category C.

    If successful Nigeria will take its position on the governing body for the period 2008-09. The West African country lost its seat on the organisation two years ago.

    Category C of the governing body consists of 20 representatives. So far Bulgaria, Chile, Egypt, Indonesia, Jamaica, New Zealand, Nigeria, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Thailand, Turkey and Ukraine have signified their intention of seeking election.

    A total of 40 members make up the executive arm of the IMO, broken into three categories based on a number of factors including tonnage strength and influence with international shipping. A and B categories each consist of ten representatives with A category representing the more powerful shipping nations.



    Rwanda wants rail connections with region

    Rwanda’s President Paul Kagame has held talks with a US rail company, BNSF Railway Corporation, to pursue his dream of a rail network linking his landlocked country with neighbouring states.

    BNSF Assistant VP John Orrison said the discussions centred around a railway linking Kigali (Rwanda’s capital) with Tanzania’s dry port of Isaka.

    "We held talks with the President (Kagame) about ways in which the government can be helpful in speeding up the processes involved in the pre-construction of the railway line," Orrison told journalists recently.

    The American said he had briefed the president on various ways in which his company could assist with expertise and technical support, adding that an approach had also been made to the Tanzanian Ports Authority and the Tanzanian Railway Corporation.

    The Tanzanian government is apparently interested in the proposed Isaka – Kigali railway which would bring added revenue for the port of Dar es Salaam.

    A German consultancy company has been appointed to take the project forward.

    Previous plans dating back to 1913 envisaged a railway connecting Rwanda with the rest of East Africa but failed to come into fruition. A later proposal from an Australian company in the mid 1980s also failed to make progress.



    Pic of the day – AURORA OPAL

    Click on image to enlarge – with some browsers click twice



    The bulker AURORA OPAL on berth at Island View 1 in Durban during January 2003. The 19,340-gt ship has since undergone several name changes and is currently sailing as SIFNOS PRIDE for a Greek company. Picture Terry Hutson

    NB Shipping pictures submitted by readers are always welcome – please email to info@ports.co.za

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