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Ports & Ships Maritime News

26 September 2011
Author: Terry Hutson

Bringing you shipping, freight, trade and transport related news of interest for Africa since 2002

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TODAY’S BULLETIN OF MARITIME NEWS

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News continues below...

FIRST VIEW – SEVEN SEAS

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Subsea 7’s pipelayer SEVEN SEAS bunkering in Cape Town harbour prior to sailing for West Africa. The highly sophisticated vessel recently underwent maintenance and repair in Durban with time spent in the Prince Edward Graving Dock, with the drydocking undertaken by Dormac Marine. Picture by Ian Shiffman

News continues below…

SAMSA SAYS MARITIME SECTOR READY TO MEET GOVT PLAN FOR JOB CREATION

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Richards Bay – The South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) officially launched its Maritime Skills Development Study last week. According to SAMSA the initiative, which was taken in partnership with the Human Resource Development Council South Africa (HRDCSA) and with the support of the Department of Transport (DoT), will be key to the process of skills development and empowerment in the marine sector in South Africa.

The ongoing issue of unemployment and skills shortage in South Africa has prompted the urgent attention of both public and private sector entities, it said.

“This study is therefore SAMSA's undertaking to help with highlighting the skills gap within the broader maritime sector and to provide further insights on pivotal interventions needed by the industry.”

The study was conducted with the expert help of audit firm Deloitte, who provided the technical expertise to investigate the economic influence of the maritime sector. Deloitte undertook extensive research in investigating skills shortages within the maritime sector and provided a framework to harness the job creation potential within this industry.

The study calls upon training institutions, the government and the private sector to work together in ensuring that South Africans are armed with skills to be able to participate in the maritime sector and thereby ensure the bridging of the existing skills gap.

“We value the partnerships forged with private international companies to assist with the deployment of cadets but we also need to remind South Africans about the economic value that will be brought should we have our very own human capital to quantify for the employment opportunities on the business shore,” said SAMSA CEO Commander Tsietsi Mokhele.

The study provides for measures to be put in place to promote growth and development in the five sub-sectors in the maritime industry: Ports and Ships of the industry i.e. Shipping; Marine Resources; Marine Tourism and Leisure; Marine Manufacturing and Construction; and Commercial Support and Business Services and Public Interests.

Furthermore, says SAMSA, measures will have to be set in place for the protection of current jobs but over and above this, a catalyst should be provided to promote growth and development in the various sub-sectors of the maritime industry.

News continues below…

NEWS OF SHIPS AND SHIPPING LINES

Hamburg Süd names new ship Santa Catarina

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Santa Isabel in Durban harbour. Picture by Trevor Jones

The German container carrier Hamburg Süd has named its latest 7,100-TEU capacity container ship SANTA CATARINA. Hamburg Süd has ten of the Santa class of ships on order, of which Santa Catarina is the fifth to enter service.

Each ship boasts 1600 reefer plugs, among the highest number among the shipping world. The class is the biggest container class in service with Hamburg Süd. All ten will have been delivered by mid year 2012.

Santa Catarina, which was built by the Daewoo Shipbuilding & Marine Engineering shipyard in South Korea, entered service in March this year since when she has been operating in the carrier’s service between Asia and South Africa/east coast South America, known as the Good Hope Express.


Drewry forecasts 75% of reefer trade will be in containers by 2014

Shipping analyst Drewry says that by 2014 75% of all perishable cargo will be carried in reefer containers, as the move away from conventional reefer ships escalates.

According to the analyst the order book for newbuild reefer ships is currently lying at zero with a downward rate of charter rates acting against an emptying newbuild order book. This will force the sector to make use of reefer slots on container ships, it says.

The global reefer fleet currently sits at 691 ships but with scrapping to continue it says this number could further reduce to less than 200 within the next four years, enabling container ships to capture a greater share of this market. source – China News and Drewry


Save Our Seas lengthened

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Save Our Seas. Picture by Trevor Jones

The privately operated shark research vessel SAVE OUR SEAS has been successfully cut in half and a 15 metre long plug inserted into her hull to length the little ship. We hope to have more news of this unusual undertaking shortly.

The work is being undertaken by South African Shipbuilders at its yard in Bayhead, Durban.

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WORLD MARITIME DAY CELEBRATED

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Richards Bay, where this year’s World Maritime Day was officially celebrated

Pretoria – The South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA) on Thursday (22 September) joined the rest of the world in celebrating World Maritime Day.

World Maritime Day is observed every year in September to focus attention on the importance of shipping safety, maritime security and clean seas.

The International Maritime Organisation (IMO) says this year’s theme is ‘Piracy – orchestrating the response’ – a theme chosen as part of efforts to safeguard human life at sea. The body is hoping to rally enough global support to eradicate the phenomenon.

To this end, the following objectives will be pursued during the year:

  • Increase pressure at the political level to secure the immediate release of all hostages being held by pirates – seafarers, in the main;

  • Review and improve guidance to the industry and promote full compliance by ships with all recommended preventive, evasive and defensive measures;

  • Promote greater levels of support from navies;

  • Promote anti-piracy coordination and co-operation between and among States, regions and organizations;

  • Build the capacity of States in piracy-infested regions of the world, and elsewhere, to deter, interdict and bring to justice those who commit acts of piracy and armed robbery against ships; and


  • Equally importantly, provide care for those attacked or hijacked by pirates and for their families.

    The South African Government, through the Department of Transport with the support of SAMSA, has through the years intensified its efforts to fight piracy.

    SAMSA is a custodian of some of the best technologies in the world that monitors the movement of ships bound for South Africa.

    The Long Range Identification Tracking System (LRIT) technology, housed at the SAMSA Centre for Sea Watch and response in Cape Town, is a beacon of hope in the fight against Piracy.

    The South African Maritime Authority, together with the Department of Transport, marked the day in the port city of Richards Bay, where Transport Minister Sibusiso Ndebele joined other dignitaries in observing World Maritime Day. – BuaNews

    News continues below…

    PIRACY: SPANISH TANKER MATTHEOS 1 RELEASED BY WEST AFRICAN PIRATES

    The Spanish tanker MATTHEOS 1, which was captured by West African pirates last week Wednesday, 21 September while off the coast of Benin, has been released after the pirates left the ship making no demands for a ransom. The pirates did however ransacking the ship's crew quarters and robbed the crew of their possessions while also draining away some of the ship’s fuel oil.

    This is the difference between piracy off the West African coast and that off the north-east coast of Africa. The motive appears to have been robbery and not piracy for purposes of ransoming the ship. It is thought that the pirates or robbers came from Nigeria although the actual attack took place off Benin, which has been the scene of a number of attacks on ships in recent weeks.

    The crew of 23 made up of five Spaniards, two Ukrainians and 16 Filipinos were unharmed. source - Maritime Bulletin

    Ship attacked in Mozambique Channel

    The Dutch owned and managed, Cyprus-flagged container ship MEKONG RIVER (9,940-gt, built 2008) came under attack from pirates while underway 65 n.miles northeast of Mayotte in the northern Mozambique Channel. The attack took place at 09h43 local time on Wednesday 21 September 2011.

    It appears that two skiffs each with three or four men on board were involved in the attack. They were spotted at a distance of 1.5 miles at which point the skiffs increased speed to 18 knots and flanked the box ship on both sides. The master of Mekong River ordered speed to be increased and began evasive manoeuvres while initiating anti-piracy measures.

    After chasing the ship for 25 minutes the pirate group broke off the attack leaving the ship to sail to safety. The pirate group is thought to still be in the area.

    The pirate attack in the northern Mozambique Channel occurred at a time when the South African Navy had no ships on patrol in the region, with SAS AMATOLA having returned to South Africa and her replacement SAS MENDI not yet having arrived at Pemba, the navy’s forward base.


    Anti-piracy device nets interest

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    Image and video hosting by TinyPic

    A British Company which makes compressed air cannons has reported a surge in the interest for its new floating entanglement device which can stop pirate skiffs in their tracks.

    Cardiff based maritime security and survival experts, BCB International Ltd, have unveiled a new floating entanglement projectile which can be deployed from its British made compressed air launcher called the ‘Sea Stinger’. The company reports that it has piqued the interest of the Maritime Industry as it focuses on new techniques of combating the growing menace of sea piracy as part of the International Maritime Organisation’s World Maritime Week (26-30 September).

    BCB International’s Marine Projects Officer, Jonathan Delf, said: “Since we demonstrated both the ‘Sea Stinger’ and its new floating entanglement line at the World’s biggest Defence and Security Trade Fair in London last week (DSEi), we have been inundated with enquiries about the technology.

    “Our compressed air launchers like the ‘Sea Stinger’ can be fired remotely from a ship’s bridge or a Port Authority’s control room. The Sea Stinger’s new floating entanglement line works very much like the road spikes used by the Police to stop vehicles who take part in criminal activities. The vessel arresting line entangles itself around the propellers of a water craft like skiffs or rigid inflatable boats used for acts of piracy as well as other criminal acts and terrorist threats. It operates at pressures up to 1000 PSI and the projectiles deployed by the Sea Stinger can reach speeds of up to 350 metres per second. The Sea Stinger can also deploy a variety of other projectiles such as life saving buoyancy aids and smoke for screening or marking.

    “Piracy is a problem that has dogged shipping companies for several years. In actual fact the problem is getting worse. The Maritime Industry is slowly realising that it needs to cast its net wider and start looking at new piracy protection technologies that do not place their vessels and crews under any further unnecessary risk. We believe that our compressed air anti-piracy launchers like the ‘Sea Stinger’ ticks all the boxes.”

    News continues below…

    COAL INDIA GROUP PLANS TO EXPORT COAL FROM MOZAMBIQUE IN 2015

    New Delhi, 23 September – The Coal India group announced last week that it planned to mine 5 million tons of coal per year in two blocks in Mozambique from 2015 and added that it also planned to buy more coal deposits in the country, according to Indian newspaper The Economic Times.

    The group was granted two coal blocks in August 2009 following an international tender launched by the Mozambican government.

    “We plan to start production in the two blocks in 2015 and we expect to have production of 5 million tons per year in the two blocks,” said the chairman of the Coal India group on the sidelines of a coal conference in New Delhi. He said the two blocks contained estimated coal reserves of 1 billion tonnes. (macauhub)

    PICS OF THE DAY – NOVA ZEELANDIA

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    Seatrade’s Dutch-owned and operated reefer vessel NOVA ZEELANDIA (4440-gt, built 1986) – now an endangered species if analyst company Drewry has got it right (see above), in Cape Town harbour after loading fruit. Pictures by Ian Shiffman

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    Don’t forget to send us your news and press releases for inclusion in the News Bulletins. Shipping related pictures submitted by readers are always welcome – please email to info@ports.co.za

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