Ports & Ships Maritime News

Oct 17, 2007
Author: P&S





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TODAY’S BULLETIN OF MARITIME NEWS

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  • Big expansion plan for Dar es Salaam port

  • New SA – Madagascar - East Africa service from MACS

  • India, Brazil, SA near bill trade target

  • SA, India, Brazil trade reaches US$7 billion

  • End of the line for liner

  • Pic of the day –SS NORWAY, aka BLUE LADY





    Big expansion plan for Dar es Salaam port

    The Tanzanian government has revealed plans of spending close to US$113 million on upgrading facilities at the port of Dar es Salaam, where a lack of modern and efficient infrastructure has been blamed for long-standing congestion.

    Speaking to the East African newspaper, Tanzania’s deputy minister for Infrastructure Development, Dr Maua Daftari said some of the funding would be used to encourage more business to the port from neighbouring states. Investments would also be made at Mafia Island

    Acknowledging that existing Dar es Salaam port facilities were ‘overwhelmed’ Dr Daftari said the government recognised the need to expand harbour facilities. This would encompass a wide spectrum of port services, from rehabilitating existing jetties to building new ones, improving security throughout the port and attending to areas such as cargo inspection and clearing facilities.

    $5.8 million will go on the rehabilitation of existing and new jetties alone, she disclosed.

    As far as Mafia Island was concerned a tender for the Mafia jetty had already been advertised and its construction would greatly assist transportation for the people of Mafia, particularly as many of these are fish farmers.


    However the intention is also to transform and develop Mafia Island as a tourist hub within the Indian Ocean region, which therefore required an efficient facility of access. The aim is to provide tidal facilities for vessels of up to 80m in length for Mafia.

    source – East African



    News SA – Madagascar - East African service from MACS

    MACS Line (Maritime Carrier Shipping) has introduced its new ‘White Rhino’ service between South Africa, Madagascar and East Africa.

    The service makes use of the chartered vessel WHITE RHINO (the former CEC LIBERTY), a 5,400-dwt general cargo vessel with a capacity of 350-TEU which has been taken on charter for 12 months. The vessel carries twin cranes each of 150 tonne lifting capacity giving a combined heavy-lift option of 300t when used in tandem.

    White Rhino will operate between Durban, Maputo, Toamasina, Mombasa and Beira and differs only slightly from the existing ‘Black Rhino’ service introduced a year ago by MACS, which involves the heavylift vessel BLACK RHINO (former CHEYENNE - see related story in PORTS & SHIPS dated 14 August 2006)
    http://www.ports.co.za/news/article_2006_08_13_1811.html#one

    The Black Rhino service operates a similar rotation but calls at Majunga in Madagascar instead of Toamasina.

    The Durban end of both services connect with MACS direct services to Northern Europe and the GAL service to the US Gulf ports.

    source AXSLiner




    India, Brazil, SA near bill trade target

    Pretoria (BuaNews) - The second annual India – Brazil - South Africa (IBSA) summit could see the trilateral initiative's trade target of $10-Billion being reached within the next few years, writes Sholain Govender.

    Events leading up to the summit, at the Presidential Guesthouse in Pretoria today (17 October), will provide a platform for the formation of trilateral business partnerships.

    These are to enhance existing trade among the three member states and develop new partnerships.

    President Thabo Mbeki, Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh are set to sign six agreements aimed at boosting the south-south existing relationships and creating new programmes for developing neighbours during the summit.

    Speaking at a pre-summit briefing, Ambassador Jerry Matjila, head of the Asia and Middle East section in the Department of Foreign Affairs said since IBSA's establishment of IBSA in 2003, trade amongst the three countries has increased to between $6 billion and $7 billion.

    "IBSA is about business. IBSA is about unlocking the potential of the south," said Mr Matjila.

    Discussions amongst the IBSA heads of state at the G-8 meeting in Evian in 2003 and ongoing trilateral consultations led to the Foreign Ministers of the respective countries meeting in Brasilia on 6 June, 2003.

    At this meeting of Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma from South Africa, Celso Amorim from Brazil and Yashwant Sinha from India, the launching of the IBSA Dialogue Forum was formalised through the adoption of the Brasilia Declaration.

    During the launch, the three ministers stressed that trilateral co-operation should focus on key areas that would yield results in the short to medium term.

    It was also agreed that the three countries would identify best practices that should be showcased as examples to other developing countries.

    Last year, President Mbeki attended the first IBSA heads of state summit in Brasilia, Brazil during which a number of co-operation agreements were signed.

    These agreements included a pact on renewable energies such as bio-fuels like ethanol, in which Brazil is a world leader.

    Another agreement signed seeks to harmonise product standards between the three countries to facilitate trade that is hoped will soon top $ 10 billion, as well as an agreement on sea transportation of their respective products.

    Co-operation agreements in agriculture and information networks also featured.

    The agenda for discussions included transport, general energy and nuclear energy within the context of the Non-Proliferation Treaty on weapons. Climate change, an issue which is moving increasingly higher up the global developmental agenda, also featured in discussions.

    The objectives of the IBSA Dialogue Forum also include the promotion of international poverty alleviation and social development, the trilateral exchange of information, international best practices, technologies and skills, as well as to compliment each others competitive strengths into collective synergies.

    IBSA currently has 14 working groups in action, with transport and energy being two of the key groups.

    The trilateral initiative promotes cooperation in a broad range of areas, namely agriculture, climate change, culture, defence, education, energy, health, information society, science and technology, social development, trade and investment, tourism and transport.

    At last year's summit, a trilateral free trade agreement was also signed between India and Mercosur, a regional Latin American trade grouping that includes Brazil, Argentina, Paraguay, Uruguay and Venezuela, and the South African Customs Union (SACU) that includes Swaziland, Lesotho, Botswana and South Africa.

    Mr Matjila said the member states of Mercosur and SACU, along with India, have already given political mandate to Brazil and South Africa to further develop trade ties between the three regions.

    This year, a business forum will form a major component of events leading up to the one-day summit and will see over two hundred business people from India, Brazil and South Africa attend discussion groups at the Sandton Convention Centre on 15th and 16th October.

    Mr Matjila said it was a chance for the business people attending to form trilateral companies, especially in view of the emerging opportunities in the transport, maritime and aviation, sector.

    He said increased volume of air traffic had resulted in plans for one Indian airline, Jet Airlines, to fly to OR Tambo International Airport soon and government hoped that the private sector would move into this area.

    Other discussions that will be take place in Sandton include technology, a parliamentary forum which members of parliament from the three member states in attendance, an academic forum and a women's forum which will focus on gender economic inclusivity.

    Feedback from all the forums will be given to the three heads of states during the summit.

    Mr Matjila also said that the heads of states will most likely be signing six agreements during the summit related to public administration, higher education, health and medicines, social development, cultural cooperation and energy.

    In terms of energy, Mr Matjila said that new working groups on climate change have been discussed by IBSA delegations over the last two years. He said South Africa was looking into the use of bio-fuels and wanted to learn from Brazil, a country which currently uses almost 40 percent bio-fuels.

    The ambassador said government hoped the agreements would be accompanied by programmes of action which would facilitate the implementation of the agreements.

    Also on the agenda for the summit is the IBSA fund to which each member state contributes $1 million annually.

    Ambassador Matjila said the fund, a rapid response fund providing money to projects where funds usually take a long time to be made available, would be evaluated and South Africa would put forward suggestions of countries, like Burundi, in which programmes can be supported through IBSA.

    The purpose of the IBSA Fund is to implement duplicable, phased projects in needy developing countries.



    SA, India, Brazil trade reaches $ 7 billion

    by Michael Appel (BuaNews)

    Johannesburg 16 October 2007 - Trade between South Africa, India and Brazil has reached the $7 billion mark but the countries should be aiming to improve this, says the Minister of Trade and Industry Mandisi Mpahlwa.

    Speaking at the trilateral India-Brazil-South Africa (IBSA) summit in Johannesburg on Tuesday, the minister said South-South trade has been on the increase with trade between South Africa and Brazil having tripled in the last decade.

    "The rationale for increased relations between IBSA members is rooted in arguments that call for greater South-South integration.

    "Effective South-South trade serves twin purposes of assuring both positive trade and economic growth," said Mpahlwa at the summit which will see over two hundred business people from the three countries attending discussion groups at the Sandton Convention Centre.

    Events leading up to the summit at the Presidential Guesthouse in Pretoria on Wednesday have provided a platform for the formation of trilateral business partnerships.

    These are to enhance existing trade among the three member states and develop new partnerships.

    President Thabo Mbeki, Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva and India's Prime Minister Manmohan Singh are set to sign six agreements aimed at boosting the south-south existing relationships and creating new programmes for developing neighbours during the summit.

    Further targets have been set to increase the figure to $10 billion by the end of 2007 at the second annual IBSA summit.

    Increased trade perpetuates Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), infrastructure development and increased competition in the developing countries.

    Recent analysis showed that developing countries accounted for about 30 percent of world trade and that about 40 percent of that trade was South-South orientated.

    The minister said there was a concern that the existence of trade barriers and tariffs often act as a disincentive to investing or trading countries.

    Research done by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) showed that tariffs affecting South-South trade are about 11 percent, while there is only a 4 percent tariff affecting North-South trade.

    The lower tariff barriers for North-South trade were an indication that more needed to be done to reduce tariff barriers hampering South-South trade.

    The minister said Brazil, India and South Africa are all growing economies and emphasised that more needed to be done to broaden the scope on tariff issues.

    Negotiations regarding these issues were underway he said, adding that it was understandable that countries didn't want to open up their markets completely.

    "South Africa, India and Brazil are all developing countries with challenges centring around communications, transport, energy, trade tariffs, unemployment and poverty.

    "Our industrial development is underway, and each are dealing with issues such as poverty, unemployment and infrastructure development, therefore making it very difficult to open up markets completely," said the minister.

    Last year, President Mbeki attended the first IBSA heads of state summit in Brasilia, Brazil during which a number of co-operation agreements were signed.

    These agreements included a pact on renewable energies such as bio-fuels like ethanol, in which Brazil is a world leader.

    Another agreement signed seeks to harmonise product standards between the three countries to facilitate trade that is hoped will soon top $ 10 billion, as well as an agreement on sea transportation of their respective products.

    Co-operation agreements in agriculture and information networks also featured.



    End of the line for liner

    Work has commenced of dismantling the former pride of France, the 76,049-gt cruise ship now known simply as ‘BLUE LADY’ - once one of the most famous of all ocean liners, SS FRANCE which was later refurbished for cruising and becoming the celebrated NORWAY of NCL Lines.

    This marks the end of a long drawn-out saga involving litigation in the Indian Supreme Court and world-wide controversy over issues involving permission to dismantle the ship, which is thought to contain large quantities of hazardous matter including asbestos and other toxic substances.

    The Supreme Court was told the ship carried over 900t of asbestos alone and various injunctions were placed on the vessel, which nevertheless was grounded at Alang in such a way that it would be impossible to refloat her again.

    Workers have now begun removing valuable items including furniture and electrical fittings that will be sold to collectors. This will be followed by the actual demolition which will see the once massive ship reduced in little time to pieces of scrap iron and other metals.

    According to local press, workers have dismissed the risk to their health of toxic fumes and asbestos dust, saying that starvation brings an end much sooner. The court meanwhile has imposed stipulations on the demolition aimed at safeguarding their lives – a move that environmental organisations such as Greenpeace have dismissed as being a waste of time because the demolition companies lack suitable equipment to carry out the court’s wishes.



    Pic of the day –SS NORWAY, aka BLUE LADY





    One last look at the former SS NORWAY, now dubbed ‘Blue Lady’ and about to be cut up on a beach called Alang in India – see story above. The photograph was taken as the vessel was being towed past Cape Town on 1 July 2005. Picture Ian Shiffman



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