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Ports & Ships Maritime News

Aug 3, 2010
Author: Terry Hutson

Shipping, freight, trade and transport related news of interest for Africa

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TODAY’S BULLETIN OF MARITIME NEWS

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First View – LOUIS

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As a fishermen goes about his business, apparently unconcerned by the routine of a large ship passing by a little more than a stones-throw away, the multi purpose freighter LOUIS (10,224-gt, built 1979) heads across the tranquil waters of Durban Bay for another berth to begin loading cargo after discharging at Maydon Wharf. Picture by Terry Hutson

 

News continues below...

Transport infrastructure will face strain for next 20 years – PwC analysis

 

Increasing demand, financial constraints and bottlenecks threaten performance of transport infrastructure by 2030

Rising demand, constrained financial resources and existing bottlenecks in supply as well as the need for efficient demand management are challenges transport infrastructure operators will be facing in the next 20 years.

These are the headline findings from the second report in PricewaterhouseCoopers ‘Transportation & Logistics 2030’ series, carried out in cooperation with the Supply Chain Management Institute (SMI) of the European Business School (EBS).

Respondents to the underlying Delphi survey of 104 experts in 29 countries predict that shortages in transport infrastructure will remain until 2030. In terms of the survey methodology, participants were asked to assess the probability of a variety of hypotheses on a scale of 0-100 percent.

Respondents expect that industrialised countries will lead in transport infrastructure provision, with an average probability of occurrence of 60 percent. Although emerging markets, such as India and Russia, currently heavily invest in transport infrastructure, they will not be able to close the gap completely by 2030. The Delphi panel expects that strong regulatory measures, such as toll roads or congestion charges, will compensate for the increased level of investment in transport infrastructure.

Klaus-Dieter Ruske, partner and global transportation and logistics leader at PricewaterhouseCoopers, commented:

“Gaps in financing are a paramount concern for all levels of infrastructure, local, national or international. The challenge for both the public as well as the private sector will be to identify ways of cooperation and to create the best win-win situation.

“Demand will be managed through regulatory measures, such as toll roads and congestion pricing, by matching demand and supply at it most efficient point."

Governments, in industrialised as well as emerging countries, are facing enormous challenges in attributing sufficient capital to transport infrastructure investment. Therefore, respondents think that the financing of maintaining existing infrastructure will be more difficult than attracting investment in new infrastructure.

Transport infrastructure is one of the critical success factors for a country's or a region's competitiveness, with the potential to accelerate economic growth and investment opportunities. Competitive advantages will also be realised by taking full advantage of the potential of logistics clusters, where industry, academia and government collaborate closely. Delphi panellists think that of such clusters will activate new potential in transport infrastructure development (with a probability of occurrence of 75 percent).

Awareness about sustainability and climate change is omnipresent, since the effects of transport infrastructure and transport networks on the environment are profound. These impacts should be assessed from a holistic, long-term perspective, particularly in light of the fact that Delphi respondents think environmental costs will become an integral part of assessing the full cost of a transport infrastructure project.

Furthermore, they expect that by 2030 transport infrastructure operators will participate in the emission trading system by obtaining pollution permits, indicated by a probability of occurrence of 78 percent.

Background to analysis

PwC and SMI surveyed 104 experts from 29 countries from 5 continents using an online Real-time Delphi method. Over a time period of 8 weeks the expert panel discussed and assessed different scenarios for the T&L industry in a multi-staged procedure.

For a copy of the study ‘Transportation & Logistics 2030 - Volume 2 - Transport Infrastructure - Engine or hand brake for global supply chains?’ please visit PwC Transportation & Logistics 2030

 

News continues below…

Seventy die on Lake Albert as boat capsizes

About 70 people are feared to have died after the boat on which they were passengers capsized on Lake Albert on Saturday night. Seventeen others were rescued and five bodies have been recovered, a Ugandan district policeman said.

The accident on the lake occurred at Runga in the Hoima District. Lake Albert is in the north east of Uganda and forms part of Uganda’s border with the DRC.

The boat, which is thought to have been overloaded, was travelling in a northerly direction towards the Panyimur market in Nebbi district, according to local fishermen, a journey of eight hours normally. Passengers were mainly traders but included a number of schoolchildren, while the boat was also loaded with luggage and a cargo of fish.

A police spokesman said the boat, which has not been identified, was licensed to carry 40 people but as with many other boats on the lake was habitually overloaded.

On 20 July this year 28 people died when the boat on which they were travelling capsized on Lake Victoria, some 15km away from Jaana from where they had departed.

 

News continues below...

Piracy: Bulker captured by pirates while Saudi bank frees up USD 20 million to pay ransom demand and Kenya gives notice on no more piracy trials

The Egyptian-owned Red Sea Navigation general cargo ship SUEZ (9,277-gt, built 1984) is reported to have been captured by Somali pirates in the early hours on yesterday (2 August), after coming under attack including the use of small arms fire. After receiving the initial notification that the ship was under attack all communication with the vessel, which is carrying a cargo of cement bags, was lost. The ship has a crew of 23 on board, including Egyptian, Pakistani, Indian and Sri Lankan nationalities. Suez is registered in Panama and was travelling in the Internationally Recommended Transit Corridor (IRTC) when attacked. A military helicopter sent by the European Naval forces operating in the region later established that the ship is in the hands of pirates.

Meanwhile it is being reported that a USD 20 million ransom for the release of a Saudi ship, the 5,136-gt AL-NISR AL-SAUDI and the crew of 14 has been made available by insurers and approved by the Saudi central bank. According to Arab News the ship’s owner said that the crew, made up of 13 Sri Lankans and one Greek were being tortured. Arab News quoted Kamal Arri, manager of International Bunkering Co who said: “Being the ship's owner, we have already sent a cable to the Interior Ministry to allow quick payment of ransom by the insurance company.” If this report is factual it will amount to the largest ransom paid so far for the release of any ship seized by Somali pirates.

Kenya meanwhile says it has issued a six-month notice of its intention of not accepting any more Somali pirates to be tried in its courts. Kenya says that the international community is not living up to its promises of helping Kenya with the burden of prosecuting and imprisoning pirates. Kenya agreed to try pirates on behalf of other countries after few other states agreed to handle the court cases, citing lack of suitable legislation. Kenya and the Seychelles were subsequently talked into assuming this role after pressure from the United States and other nations but Kenya now believes it has become simply a dumping ground.

EU NAVFOR, the European Community naval force operating in the Horn of Africa region, ostensibly to escort UN and EU food and other aid ships to Somalia but also to assist in anti piracy actions, has been reinforced with the arrival of the Italian frigate LIBECCIO, which will serve for the next few months with EU NAVFOR on its patrol and escort duties.

The 3,100-ton frigate is one of the Maestrale class which carries two helicopters, the main ‘weapon’ used in anti piracy activity.

 

News continues below…

NSRI says don’t go to sea without proper safety plan and equipment

 

It is imperative to go to sea with a proper safety plan and serviceable safety equipment, says the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI).

“Anything can happen at sea that could threaten survival. Your craft’s batteries could die, your craft’s motors could fail, you could hit a semi- submerged object, your boat or paddle craft can be capsized by a wave even in the calmest seas, someone on-board your vessel could get injured or suddenly sustain a serious medical condition, you could find yourself in thick fog and lost or a sudden on-set of increment weather could threaten your safety.....

” The NSRI said it was appealing to all fishermen and anyone launching any kind of craft to go to sea to:

Carry safety equipment: Wear a properly fitting lifejacket at all times while at sea. Have red distress flares; a signalling mirror or CD disc; communications devices – a handheld radio or cellphone with batteries fully charged and kept in water tight plastic sleeves; a referees whistle; waterproof torch, a handheld GPS (Global Positioning System) – kept in an easily recoverable watertight capsize kit.

“Your craft should be painted in a bright colour with reflective stickers pasted on your craft and stencil your name, a contact number of a responsible person on-shore and your own contact number on your craft.

“Practice using your safety equipment before launching your craft. The NSRI recommend you jump into a swimming pool fully clothed, with your lifejacket on, to practice recovering safety items from your capsize kit. It will be of little help if the first time you familiarize yourself with your safety equipment is in a real emergency when adrenalin and rough seas are at play.

“Always let a responsible person on shore know what time you are leaving, your exact route and intentions and your arrival time. Stick to your plan at all costs.

“Anyone going to sea regularly for prolonged periods should sms (communicate) coordinates giving your position to the responsible land party at regular intervals (the NSRI recommend hourly). If you change your plans during your voyage or if you wander off-course during your voyage you should let the responsible person on-shore know. Discuss a plan of action with the responsible shore person so that everyone involved in your planned voyage knows what the procedures will be if you fail to return or if you fail to make a communications connection at the designated times.

“The NSRI urges skippers of boats to brief their crew and passengers on safety procedures prior to launching. Cover areas such as capsizing and what everyone should do if the boat capsizes. Flooding and what everyone should do if the boat floods and begins to sink. At regular intervals during the voyage go over emergency safety procedures for your crew and passengers.

“Everyone living along the coast, anyone visiting the coast and anyone going to sea should have the sea rescue emergency phone number programmed into their phone (the responsible person on shore should also have the sea rescue emergency phone number programmed into their phone). In a sea rescue emergency contact the sea rescue emergency phone number. Contacting the sea rescue emergency phone number will immediately activate all authorities responsible for a sea rescue emergency without delay and allows the sea rescue authorities the ability to immediately set up a central communications joint operations control centre and launch an effective sea rescue operation.

“If you don’t know your nearest sea rescue emergency phone number call the NSRI headquarters during office hours at (021) 4344011 to find out.”

Finally, the NSRI advises that if you suspect someone to be in difficulty at sea, or, if you suspect someone to be overdue from fishing, paddling or boating, you should call the sea rescue emergency phone number without delay allowing the sea rescue authorities to investigate immediately. This will save essential time if there is trouble.

 

News continues below…

Grab this! Arlona supplies more new cargo handling equipment

South African ports are without question the best equipped in Africa. Local harbours utilise the latest technologies and have invested in state of the art equipment to ensure high efficiencies, reduced maintenance requirements and optimum safety.

It is in this highly competitive sector that Arlona Engineering (Pty) Ltd has earned an enviable reputation for innovation, quality and reliability, competing favourably with the world’s leading manufacturers of bulk handling equipment.

Since its inception in Durban in 1966, Arlona Engineering, specialists in fabrication, machining, proofloading and maintenance of bulk handling and stevedoring equipment, has made a significant contribution to the efficiency of South African ports.

“The company’s success can be attributed to a thorough understanding of this environment - known for its arduous operating conditions – a close working relationship with South Africa’s leading stevedores, as well as a commitment from the Arlona team to design and manufacture equipment to meet the exact needs of every customer,” says Steve Christy, managing director of Arlona Engineering. “The company’s fully computerised fabrication facility is equipped to design and manufacture grabs, hoppers, container spreaders and lifting equipment, as well as a wide range of cargo handling equipment – all to exact specifications.

“Arlona’s latest grab, with a unique 12m³ hook-on, remote opening, dumping design, is confirmation of the company’s commitment to keep abreast with leading global trends. This new grab, which has been described by customers as the ‘best grab Arlona has ever built’, is generating quick returns for local stevedores.”

The new generation of grabs, with a unique locking mechanism that is simple and reliable, has advanced design features over conventional units. These include reduced tare mass, superior sealing and enhanced reliability.

By employing the latest design technology, the 12m³ capacity grab weighs only 7 000 kg. This has been achieved without any reduction in strength or loss of closing forces - a problem generally associated with lightweight grabs.

In addition, the capacity of these buckets can be quickly and easily reduced in 2m³ increments right down to 6m³. This means that, depending on the commodity being handled, the grab can be used on cranes with a safe working load as low as 15 tonne. This flexibility is especially useful in South Africa where ageing bulk vessels call into ports on a regular basis.

High closing forces generated by robust chains which close and suspend the grab, are complemented by serrated dust seals and an under- hanging lip, making the grab both robust and environmentally-friendly. As a result of these advanced design features, leaking grab buckets are an unusual sight in South African ports.

Building on the success of the new 12m³ grab, Arlona Engineering is currently working on the construction of a 14m³ capacity grab – a further commitment from the company to maintaining its leading position in South Africa’s shipping sector.

 

News continues below…
 

Nigeria’s Federal Govt rebukes NPA for poor port facilties


Lagos’ Tin Can Island terminal. Picture courtesy OTAL

Nigeria’s Federal Government says the Nigerian National Ports Authority (NPA) has no right to expect port concessionaires to lower their terminal charges while the NPA has failed to fulfil its part of the concession agreement.

Nigeria’s Federal Transport Minister was referring to requests from the NPA for terminal concession holders to reduce terminal charges, which the concessionaires are disputing because they say that basic services are not being provided by the port authority which they are instead having to provide.

Transport Minister Yusuf Suleiman said that government had a duty to ensure that basic requirements such as adequate roads, electricity and the provision of water at the ports was available.

The government had gone the route of concessioning port terminals in 2006 to bring efficiencies to Nigeria’s port systems. However this meant that basic services would have to be provided by the NPA on behalf of the federal government to enable the effiecint operation of the terminals. If concessionaires had to provide their own basic services such as electricity, roads and water then they had the right to increase terminal costs to defray those costs. It remained the duty of the NPA to see that these services were provided if Nigeria was to fulfil its ambition of becoming the hub ports of West Africa.

 

Pics of the Day – taking a stern view of MOL OUEME and NYK FREESIA

Stern Views! Two container ships on berth in Durban harbour back in 2005, looking towards their stern. MOL OUEME (above, 24,724-gt, built 1999) and NYK FREESIA (below, 25,713-gt, built 2001) MOL Oueme sails today as the NIARA while NYK Freesia has also undergone a change of name but continues to call in Durban as NILEDUTCH HONG KONG. Picture by Terry Hutson

 

 

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